Skip to main content

Research Repository

Advanced Search

Dr Fanon on Colonial Narcissism and Anti-Colonial Melancholia

Wright, Colin

Dr Fanon on Colonial Narcissism and Anti-Colonial Melancholia Thumbnail



Barry Sheils

Julie Walsh


This chapter provides an outline of Fanon’s involvement in the most progressive strand of French psychiatry that became known as ‘psychothérapie institutionnelle’, as well as of his clinical response to the colonial context at the Bilda-Joinville hospital in Algeria, in order to demonstrate the strong continuities between his psychiatric practice on the one hand, and his critical writings and political activism on the other. This brief portrait of ‘Dr Fanon’ paves the way for a discussion of the impact of the Freudian concepts of narcissism and melancholia on his two best known works, Black Skin, White Masks and The Wretched of the Earth. I argue that through his critical (re)deployments of narcissism and melancholia, Dr Fanon controversially comes to prescribe revolutionary violence and the creation of a new militant national community as a means of ‘treatment’ for subjective yet always also social ailments.

Acceptance Date Sep 6, 2017
Online Publication Date Nov 8, 2017
Publication Date 2017
Deposit Date Sep 7, 2017
Publicly Available Date Nov 9, 2020
Publisher Palgrave Macmillan
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Pages 185-210
Series Title Studies in the Psychosocial
Book Title Narcissm, Melancholia and the Subject of Community
Chapter Number 8
ISBN 9783319638287
Keywords Frantz Fanon, Jacques Lacan, Narcissism, Melancholia
Public URL
Publisher URL
Additional Information First Online: 8 November 2017


You might also like

Downloadable Citations