ANSO145 | Autumn | 3 ECTS

Melancholic Diasporas. Towards a Critical Anthropology of Migrations and its Discontents

As Gramsci has recognized: 'The starting-point of critical elaboration is the consciousness of what one really is and is 'knowing thyself' as a product of the historical processes to date, which has deposited in you an infinity of traces, without leaving an inventory' (Prison Notebooks). In his famous book, Said observed that 'it is imperative at the outset to compile such an inventory' (Orientalism). The questions at the core of the course concern the way in which outlaw subjects (migrants, refugees, women victims of human trafficking and their kids) made their own phenomenology of time and experiences, and the types of knowledges on migration and its discontents that emerge inside these complex ethnographic relationships. How can be dismantled the neoliberal vocabulary of terms such as 'choice', 'change', 'opportunity'? And the connected capitalist rhetoric, where 'agency' only translates the art of survival, the violence of resilience, the imperious push to adaptation and the new forms of life on loan? The course will propose the assumption that anthropological knowledge may represent a hermeneutic tool, a knowledge-power able to produce, under certain conditions, counter-practices of struggles and freedom. Ethnographic materials from Frantz Fanon Centre will be presented and analysed so to explore and discuss the methodological challenges of a critical anthropology at work.