Muneeb Hafiz

PhD student, Associate Lecturer

Current Research

My chief research aim is to explore Achille Mbembe’s notion in Critique of Black Reason that the equation of Blackness with the nonhuman becomes the template for newer forms of exclusion. With a case study of Islamophobia in Britain, I seek to understand the contemporary workings of the historic imperial relationship between “race” (and the Blackness/Whiteness nexus), British colonialism, and newer forms of exclusion and marginalisation in an era of European decentring. I aim to contribute to – and intervene in – long existing debates about Britain’s relationship to its colonial past in several ways: (i) providing an account of the complex encounter between “race,” state practice (domestic and international), and national identity/culture in modenity/coloniality; (ii) analysing Islamophobia and the broader ‘Muslim Question’ as an outcome of this raciological terrain and something other than the alleged certainties of "race"; (iii) critically examining the rich terrain of critique – from scholarly to artistic to pop cultural – of this ‘raced’ landscape which goes beyond thin notions of “resistance”; and (iv) proposing a set of co-ordinates to denaturalise existing (modern/colonial) categories approaching difference, towards a relationship with alterity (and singularity) that is more capacious, more humane in an era of declining British influence and challenges to European centrality.