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Epistemology, Ethics, and the Time/Space of Decolonization: Perspectives from the Caribbean and the Latina/o Americas

Nelson Maldonado-Torres

in Decolonizing Epistemologies

Published by Fordham University Press

Published in print November 2011 | ISBN: 9780823241354
Published online September 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780823241392 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5422/fordham/9780823241354.003.0010

Series: Transdisciplinary Theological Colloquia (FUP)

Epistemology, Ethics, and the Time/Space of Decolonization: Perspectives from the Caribbean and the Latina/o Americas

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In an explication of what he calls “postcontinental philosophy,” Nelson Maldonado-Torres's essay connects Frantz Fanon's view of subjectivity and his Caribbean migrant imaginary with that of Gloria Anzaldúa's borderlands, a spatial reference that informs her views on subjectivity and knowledge. The author sees Fanon's view of self, constituted by “desires for entering in relation with others,” as the possible inspiration for “a decolonial politics that opposes anything that betrays the ethical orientation of the self.” Anzaldúa's commitment to relationality leads her to reject as elements of ethnic identity that which “betrays the condition of the human as a bordered subject who is open to others in relations of hospitality and generosity.” In the second section of the essay, the author argues that ethnic studies is the theoretical arm of the decolonizing project insofar as it exposes the complicity of the modern research university with the first world vision of the world. Ethnic studies breaks with dominant epistemes by relating knowledges with histories of struggle and resistance, and by overcoming the logic of colonization of natural resources and of the body and mind, particularly of people of color.

Keywords: Post-continental philosophy; decolonization; Ethnic studies; geography of reason; Caribbean thought

Chapter.  5494 words. 

Subjects: Christian Theology

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