MEDirections Roundtable | Arendt, Fanon and Political Violence in Islam | with Patrycja Sasnal

Monday 14 October 2019

11.00 – 13.00

Sala Belvedere, Villa Schifanoia

Abstract | Dr. Patrycja Sasnal will present her new book ‘Arendt, Fanon and Political Violence in Islam’. The book looks at contemporary political violence, in the form of jihadism, through the lens of a philosophical polemic between Hannah Arendt and Frantz Fanon: intellectual representatives of the global north and global south. Its interest is, firstly, the relation of Arendt’s thought mostly as expressed in On Violence (1969) to Fanon’s The Wretched of the Earth (1961) and, secondly, the transposition of that relation to the contemporary phenomenon of violent Islamic extremism. Throughout the study a greater commonality between Fanon and Arendt is revealed, as well as the universal function of jihadism that satisfies the conditions for political violence, as categorized by Fanon in the global south and Arendt in the global north.

Read in tandem, Arendt and Fanon help uncover the fundamental problems of our, European, American, Middle Eastern and African, political systems, as well as north-south relations. By studying political theory, the book finds global political commonalities in a postcolonial reality.

Speaker | Dr. Patrycja Sasnal is a political scientist, Arabist and a recent graduate in philosophy. She is head of research at the Polish Institute of International Affairs in Warsaw. She is a member of the European Council on Foreign Relations’ council, European working group on Egypt and the Polish Ombudsman office’s expert commission on migration. She specializes in Middle Eastern studies, radicalization, migration trends, and modern political thought. She studied at Jagiellonian University, Sorbonne Nouvelle Paris 3, was associate researcher at the American University in Beirut and Fulbright scholar at the Johns Hopkins University’s School of Advanced International Studies. Her latest book in political philosophy – “Arendt, Fanon and Political Violence in Islam” – has just been published by Routledge in 2019.

Everyone is welcome.