Wednesday, 5 June 2013

Global Coloniality and the Decolonial Option

Madina V. Tlostanova & Walter D. Mignolo, 2009

In the title of this article we offer two concepts by means of which it is possible to rethink modernity and its darker side — coloniality - on a global scale, not only historically but also synchronously. These concepts also allow us to formulate the epistemic, political and ethical basis of global decolonial options to the existing world order, which we all witness or take part in today. The concept of global coloniality will enable us to go beyond the British/US imperial formations and the forgotten Spanish empire and consider the enormous importance of the surfacing of the Atlantic economy (the west coast of Africa, the west coast of Europe and the east coast of all the Americas), which displaced the weight that the Mediterranean had had for the Western confines of the world until 1500. We wish also to take into account the Russian revolution and the split of the Enlightenment project into two modernities (the liberal and the socialist). Finally, we will turn to consider the collapse of the Soviet Union, and the subsequent rogue of today’s neo-liberalism, which has enabled the emergence of what we describe here as polycentric world order.

Click here to read this essay in pdf.