This essay posits Jacques Derrida as a postcolonial thinker whose work Monolingualism of the Other; or, The Prosthesis of Origin must be understood as coming, at once, both before and after Frantz Fanon’s Wretched of the Earth. The argument here is for postcolonialism as a form of nostalgeria, a term Derrida uses to describe his relationship to wartime France and, inadvertently, without full acknowledgment, colonized Algeria, a relationship that puts him in an especially vulnerable position as it pertains to the franchise. Nostalgeria functions here as a condition that speaks simultaneously of an irrepressible, unforgettable, and unrequitable longing—for, inter alia, a reliable political, one that does not subject the Jew to the machinations of imperial France—that is also instructive in explicating what it means to live and write the postcolonial. It is this way that nostalgeria offers insights into the ways in which we might understand together Derrida and Fanon, both Algerians of a sort; how we might approach their writing—écriture—in the same thinking.
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Grant Farred; “Nostalgeria”: Derrida, before and after Fanon. South Atlantic Quarterly 1 January 2013; 112 (1): 145–162. doi: https://doi.org/10.1215/00382876-1891296
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