Search the Community
Showing results for tags 'political masochism'.
Found 1 result
As a white person running wilderson (I could argue that I'm a blackened body since I'm Palestinian, however if we assume that I am solely white), how would I engage in what wilderson calls "political masochism" within the round? Could I do it with a narrative, at the beginning of my speech? For all those wondering, this question is based off of this card: Wilderson 8 (Frank, “Biko and the Problematic of Presence,” in Biko Lives!: Contesting the Legacies of Steve Biko, p. 102) Even if these White radicals had been persuaded by Biko and Black Consciousness that the essential nature of the antagonism was not capitalism but anti-Blackness (and no doubt some had been persuaded), they could not have been persuaded to organize in a politically masochistic manner; that is, against the concreteness of their own communities, their own families, and themselves, rather than against the abstraction of “the system”—the targetless nomenclature preferred by the UDF. Political masochism would indeed be ethical but would also bring them to the brink of the abyss of their own subjectivity. They would be embarking upon a political journey the trajectory of which would not simply hold out the promise of obliterating class relations and establishing an egalitarian socius (what less articulate and more starry-eyed White activists in the United States refer to as “vision”), but they would be embarking upon a journey whose trajectory Frantz Fanon called “the end of the world.”22 The “new” world that class-based political “vision” is predicated on (i.e., the dictatorship of the proletariat) isn’t new in the sense that it ushers in an unimaginable episteme; it is really no more than a reorganization of Modernity’s own instruments of knowledge. But a world without race, more precisely, a world without Blackness, is truly unimaginable. Such a world cannot be accomplished with a blueprint of what is to come on the other side. It must be undone because, as Biko, Fanon, and others have intimated, it is unethical, but it cannot be refashioned in the mind prior to its undoing. A political project such as this, whereby the only certainty is uncertainty and a loss of all of one’s coordinates, is not the kind of political project Whites could be expected to meditate on, agitate for, theorize, or finance. And though it might not be the kind of project that Blacks would consciously support, it is the essence of the psychic and material location of where Blacks are. Caught between a shameful return to liberalism and a terrifying encounter with the abyss of Black “life”— caught, that is, between liberalism and death—some White activists took up the banner of socialism, others espoused a vague but vociferous anti-apartheidism, and most simply worked aimlessly yet tirelessly to fortify and extend the interlocutory life of “the ANC’s long-standing policy of deferring consideration of working class interests . . . until after national liberation had been achieved.”23