The Black Register
Prologue by Fred Moten
How can thinkers grapple with the question of the human when they have been dehumanized? How can black thinkers confront and make sense of a world structured by antiblackness, a world that militates against the very existence of blacks?
These are the questions that guide Tendayi Sithole’s brilliant analyses of the work of Sylvia Wynter, Aimé Césaire, Steve Biko, Assata Shakur, George Jackson, Mabogo P. More, and a critique of Giorgio Agamben. Through his careful interrogation of their writings Sithole shows how the black register represents a uniquely critical perspective from which to confront worlds that are systematically structured to dehumanize. The black register is the ways of thinking, knowing and doing that emerge from existential struggles against antiblackness and that dwell in the lived experience of being black in an antiblack world. The black register is the force of critique that comes from thinkers who are dehumanized, and who in turn question, define, and analyze the reality that they are in, in order to reframe it and unmask the forces that inform subjection.
This book redefines the arc of critical black thought over the last seventy-five years and it will be an indispensable text for anyone concerned with the deep and enduring ways in which race structures our world and our thought.