Fantz Fanon's View on Violence.

Essay by kronbonsUniversity, Bachelor'sA-, November 2005

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Fanon's last book "The Wretched of the Earth", was written as a response to what he and his brothers in Africa were suffering through colonial rule. Fanon addresses major issues with colonialism, focusing largely on its inherent nature as brutally violent and exploitative. He builds his case for violence as a "cleansing force" (Pg. 94) for the natives to embrace and be empowered by so to break from the bonds of the settlers.

Focusing on the French colonial Algeria, where he worked for some time in a psychiatric ward, Fanon provides an observation of the way 'natives' (Algerians) react to the extreme violence being exerted upon them by the French settlers ( This paper will focus on Fanon's unique dialectic on violence, which is central to The Wretched of the Earth. Fanon we will see comes to a controversial conclusion on violence as a positive force which "...binds [natives] together as a whole, since each individual forms a violent link in the great chain, a part of the organism of violence which has surged upward in reaction to the settler's violence in the beginning" (Fanon, Pg.


Let us now explore how Fanon comes to this conclusion on violence, and how he manages to justify what many people may consider unjustifiable. Fanon spends a great deal of time discussing the realities of colonial rule, and setting out the major class distinction that drives this book's Marxist tinted arguments. This is of course the split between the natives and the settlers, which fuels tensions and increases pressure slowly to the breaking point of the natives. The line between these classes was drawn with the guns and bayonets of the soldiers and police (Fanon, pg. 38).

This separation between the so called native 'compartments' and the European ones was real geographically as...