Dr. Norman Ajari

Lecturer in Francophone Black Studies


I am a French and American philosopher. Before becoming a Lecturer in Francophone Black Studies at the University of Edinburgh, I served as an Assistant Professor of philosophy at Villanova University, in the suburbs of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. I specialize in the history of Francophone and Anglophone Black thought, social and political philosophy, Critical Race Theory and Black male studies. I am also a board member of the Frantz Fanon Foundation, and an occasional art critic and political commentator.

My first book, Dignity or Death: Ethics and politics of race (Polity, 2022) developed a critique of continental philosophy from the perspective of the Black radical tradition. It is also available in French and Spanish. My second book, Noirceur: Race, genre, classe et pessimisme dans la pensée africaine-américaine au XXIe siecle (Divergences, 2022) reflects on the contemporary resurgence of a long tradition of Black radical pessimism under the guise of contemporary African-American intellectual movements such as Afropessimism and Black Male Studies. 

My theoretical approach is twofold. On the one hand it deploys a theoretical actualization of the global Black Radical Tradition and, on the other, it explores the untold racial unconscious of western philosophy. This endeavor is led by the belief that the specific type of dehumanization that has plagued Black people for centuries has given rise to unique forms of Black revolutionary organizing, philosophical thinking, and artistic modes of expression. Therefore, I explore the interstice between life and death inhabited by African slaves, colonial subjects, and contemporary dehumanized Blacks. 




Ph.D. (Philosophy): Université de Toulouse - Jean Jaures, 2015.

M.A. (Philosophy): Université de Toulouse - Jean Jaures, 2011.

B.A. (Communication studies): Université Paul Verlaine de Metz, 2009.

B.A. (Philosophy): Université du Luxembourg, 2009.

Open to PhD supervision enquiries?


View all 19 publications on Research Explorer