Begin from Disappointment: Black Existentialism and Political Solidarity

  • Madeline Martin-Seaver College of Notre Dame of Maryland
Keywords: Black solidarity, Race, Existentialism, Disappointment,


Through analysis and discussion of the work of Bill Lawson and Tommie Shelby, with reference to the work of Frantz Fanon, this paper discusses the link between black political solidarity and black existentialism. This paper identifies disappointment as a crucial and transformative experience to provide commonality for united action within a diverse community. Critical to the piece is the recognition that political and social forces have contributed to alienation and disappointment, and also that this apparent universality of experience does nothing to undermine the truth of black diversity. In this paper, I attempt to reconcile black existentialism with black political philosophy through examining the elements of existentialism present in the process of politicization and the development of political philosophy and solidarity.