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(2012) Re(con)figuring psychoanalysis, Dordrecht, Springer.

Fanon and libidinal economy

Derek Hook

pp. 164-183

In this chapter I want to unfold and develop the affective logic of racism that Frantz Fanon presents in Black Skin, White Masks (1986) and do so in a way that pays particular attention to the regular and conventionalized affective operations he details, demonstrating thus how Fanon outlines a particular libidinal economy. This is a line of critical analysis which has its contemporary representatives in postcolonial critique (I discuss an instance of libidinal economy in Gilroy's work, below). It also brings with it the benefit of sidestepping many of the shortcomings long associ-ated with applications of psychoanalysis to the political field such as the epistemological and political problems that arise from attempts to use psycho-diagnostic categories as means of making prognostications of existing sociohistorical and political conditions (Frosh, 2010). Whereas the political application of diagnostic language results in a sliding to-and-fro between registers of individual and society, a libidinal econ-omy is, by contrast, always necessarily trans-individual.

Publication details

DOI: 10.1057/9780230373303_10

Full citation:

Hook, D. (2012)., Fanon and libidinal economy, in A. Gülerce (ed.), Re(con)figuring psychoanalysis, Dordrecht, Springer, pp. 164-183.

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