Why Read Fanon?

In 2015, American Philosopher Lewis Gordon published his important book ('What Fanon Said: A Philosophical Introduction to His Life and Thought') on that underappreciated giant of 20th century thought, the revolutionary Martinique-born Psychiatrist-Philosopher Frantz Omar Fanon. In the following excerpt from the 'Foreword' to the book, Sociologist Sonia Dayan-Herzbrun reflects on the extraordinary significance of Fanon's… Continue reading Why Read Fanon?


‘A Special Purpose’: The Footsoldiers of the Right Wing

As millions of struggling Indians thirst for the real change in fortunes that they have been promised by one government after another since 1991 (India's official year of economic liberalization) one political party, the Bharatiya Janata Party – literally the Indian People's Party – has seen its electoral fortunes steadily improve. This has happened in… Continue reading ‘A Special Purpose’: The Footsoldiers of the Right Wing

Note for the Present: Tyranny vs. Fascism

In 1996 Historian and Political Scientist Vijay Prashad wrote a fantastic paper titled “Emergency Assessments” in which he lambasted the barren "terrain of liberal thought”. Within liberal thought, he wrote, fascism (the mass mobilization of extreme chauvinistic nationalism) ”is seen as 'ahistorical', it arises for no apparent structural reason, is fought against gallantly and then… Continue reading Note for the Present: Tyranny vs. Fascism

Understanding Capitalism: Don’t Take It On Faith

I am thinking about a note I found on the corner of the internet by journalist Liu Zhiyi: “After using the toilet at 4am, I stuck my ear on the workshop corridor wall, and listened to the machines rumbling steadily from all four directions - this is the factory's heartbeat. The employees work, walk and… Continue reading Understanding Capitalism: Don’t Take It On Faith

Why everyone should watch ‘The Battle of Algiers’

In a September 2003 article in the New York Times titled “What does the Pentagon see in 'Battle of Algiers'?”, Michael Kaufman wrote: “challenged by terrorist tactics and guerrilla warfare in Iraq, the Pentagon held a screening of [the film]” ... “As the flier inviting guests to the Pentagon screening declared: "How to win a… Continue reading Why everyone should watch ‘The Battle of Algiers’

In the ghetto …

What is a 'ghetto'? What could possibly be wrong with the (social) concept of "integration"? How might policymakers framing interventions into the lives of the ghetto poor be misguided? The following is a transcript of excerpts from Episode 23 of the UnMute Podcast, where philosopher Tommie Shelby gives us the surprising answers to these questions… Continue reading In the ghetto …

What we learnt from time travelling together (Part 3)

This is part 3 of a 3 part series, that critically examines our experience (Suvani Suri and I) of guiding a group of design students as they explored the theme: ‘time-machine’. You may begin at the beginning or read on.   We have already seen that today, the potential for authentic knowledge is easily ceded… Continue reading What we learnt from time travelling together (Part 3)