Indian American psychiatrist in a talk at Yale shares violent racist ‘fantasies’, gets slammed for her views


An Indian American psychiatrist has come under the spotlight for her latest lecture which she gave at an Ivy League institution in the US.

Dr. Aruna Khilanani took to TikTok last week in an effort to get Yale to publicly share a virtual talk she gave at the invitation of the Ivy League university entitled “The Psychopathic Problem of the White Mind.”

According to a New York Times report, Dr. Aruna Khilanani was invited by Yale University’s School of Medicine to give a talk at a weekly forum on mental health.

A forensic psychiatrist and psychoanalyst with her own private practice in New York, Khilanani welcomed the opportunity and in an online lecture on April 6, she detailed the futility of talking to White people about race, dismissing the exercise as a “waste of breath.” She recalled how her white therapist had called her anger on racism “psychotic”.

Khilanani delivered the talk to medical students in April after being invited by the Yale School of Medicine’s Child Study Center. Her comments focused on the idea of “whiteness”

“I had fantasies of unloading a revolver into the head of any white person that got in my way, burying their body and wiping my bloody hands as I walked away relatively guiltless with a bounce in my step. Like I did the world a favor,” Khilanani said during the talk.

Faced with widespread backlash, Yale School of Medicine issued a statement in which it mentioned that several faculty members had expressed concern about the content of Khilanani’s talk. Despite finding the tone and contents of the lecture antithetical to the values of the school, a video of the lecture was posted online with access limited to members of the Yale community.

“In deciding whether to post the video, we weighed our grave concern about the extreme hostility, imagery of violence, and profanity expressed by the speaker against our commitment to freedom of expression,” the statement said.

When the New York Times reached out to Khilanani for a response on the controversy the lecture had generated, she said her comments were taken out of context to “control the narrative”. She also posted several videos on TikTok slamming Yale’s “suppression of her talk on race.”

“My speaking metaphorically about my own anger was a method for people to reflect on negative feelings. To normalize negative feelings. Because if you don’t, it will turn into violent action,” she said.

She went on to discuss white people and talking about race.

“They [white people] feel that we should be thanking them for all that they have done for us. They are confused, and so are we. We keep forgetting that directly talking about race is a waste of our breath,” she said.

“We are asking a demented, violent predator who thinks that they are a saint or a superhero, to accept responsibility. It ain’t gonna happen. They have five holes in their brain. It’s like banging your head against a brick wall. It’s just like sort of not a good idea.”

At another point in the talk, Khilanani said: “This is the cost of talking to white people at all. The cost of your own life, as they suck you dry. There are no good apples out there. White people make my blood boil.”

Following the talk, Yale made a recording available internally to students and faculty but added a warning saying that the talk contained “‘profanity and imagery for violence.”

Khilanani posted several videos on TikTok highlighting the fact that Yale had not released a recording of the talk to the public and accusing the university of engaging in “suppression” of the material.

“Yo, white amnesia is an amazing thing,” Khilanani said in one of the interviews.

In her interview with Herzog, Khilanani said Yale didn’t raise concerns about her talk for a “long period of time.”

“I was kind of surprised because usually, people want to know a lot of details. And then I think, and I’m not sure about this, maybe they only put the announcement out the day before,” Khilanani said.

‘I’m not sure. This is what I think because I only got the concerns as relayed to me from the dean right before. I didn’t hear any concerns prior to that,” she said.