Wednesday, September 21, 2005


An example of hysterical whiteness; the beginning of an answer to my question. A response to an earlier post "Words Matter: Refugee vs Evacuee": "They got help..shut up you spooks". In the US I think that racism and the structures of white supremacy appear, in addition to other forms, as hysterical symptoms of a violent disavowal of kinship (the impossibility of seeing oneself as black, of seeing oneself in blackness) that announces a traumatic relation to slavery that was neither recognized as a traumatic experience in the first instance nor perceived as traumatic in the proceeding generations. Racism, buttressing white supremacy, appears as a screen to block what might have been (white) recognition of a traumatically forged kinship. Hence, the beginning of an answer to my question: why is the face of shame a black face? Why, thinking of the comment to an earlier post, is this just about "spooks"? Either talking too much or expecting too much or both. The erasure of whiteness and power and the erasure of the erasure of whiteness (as distinct from white people) and power. Those poor and middle class whites who were dispossessed. And also, let's not forget, those whites who decided that it was more important to protect their property from "those people" -- an always hystericized blackness (as distinct from black people)-- knowing that they might die, were dying on those bridges as they are denied the right to walk across into a different county, to clean air, food, water, etc.––who construct themselves through an erasure to this knowledge. Who are protected (through law, custom, etc.) from seeing themselves as affected either by those deaths or the means by which they secure(d) their lives. See Hurricane Katrina-–Our Experiences.


Post a Comment

<< Home