Respondent: Mark Sanders
In this talk, Khanna engages the notion of the lumpenproletariat in Fanon,tracing the concept through Marx and Engels, its transformation through Fanon, and its commonality with and distinction from notions of the subaltern. She draws in particular on the material in The Wretched of the Earth on mental asylums and on Fanon's work as a psychiatrist to think of the radical form of subjectivity announced in mental life, an engagement with an idea of rogues, and a politics that emerges less from a sense of the moral or of right than of desubjectivation.
Please note: Professor Khanna will also be leading a special seminar for interested graduate students on Wednesday, February 8th from 11am-1pm, in Room 222, 19 University Place. To register, and receive the pre-circulateda rticle for discussion, please email Joe Napolitano at
Ranjana Khanna is Margaret Taylor Smith Director of Women's Studies and Professor of English, Women's Studies, and the Literature Program at Duke University. She works on Anglo- and Francophone postcolonial theory and literature, and film, psychoanalysis, and feminist theory.She is the author of Dark Continents: Psychoanalysis and Colonialism (Duke University Press, 2003) and Algeria Cuts: Women and Representation 1830 to the Present (Stanford University Press, 2008).
She has published widely on transnational feminism, psychoanalysis, and postcolonial and feminist theory, literature, and film, in journals including Differences, Signs, Third Text, Diacritics, Screen, and Art History. Her current book manuscript in progress is entitled Asylum: The Concept and the Practice.
This event is co-sponsored by the Department of Comparative Literature, the Program in Gender and Sexuality Studies, and the Anglophone Project.