Komarine Romdenh-Romluc: ‘Fanon's Philosophy of Language’ (The University of Sheffield)
Wednesday 9th of December 2020 - 14:00-15:00 GMT
Frantz Fanon takes colonialism to be not just a physical system of oppression but also an ideology, i.e., a set of ideas that determines identities, hierarchy, and authority that helps to hold this physical system in place. He takes language to be crucially important to the spread and maintenance of colonial ideology. In this talk, I will present two forms of linguistic injustice we find in his work. First, I will show how Fanon anticipates what Miranda Fricker has more recently defined as a form of hermeneutical injustice, whereby uneven relations of power lead to harmful constructions of self-identity on the part of the colonised. Second, I will show how he delineates a form of injustice that consists in a fundamental alienation from language for colonised persons. The importance of language to us means that this ends up being a kind of self-alienation.