Cover

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Title Page, Copyright, Dedication

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pp. i-vi

Contents

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pp. vii-viii

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Preface to the 2012 Edition

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pp. ix-xxiv

This book was published right at the edge of two centuries, in the year 2000. The main thesis advanced through it has been reinforced, since then, by the unfolding of global histories. For five hundred years, universal history was told from the perspective of one local history, that of Western civilization, an aberration, indeed, that passed...

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Preface and Acknowledgments

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pp. xxv-2

THE MAIN topic of this book is the colonial difference in the formation and transformation of the modern/colonial world system. Immanuel Wallerstein’s (1974, 1980, 1989) seminal and controversial study is my starting point and the colonial difference my departing point. A corollary and consequence of it constitute the second...

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Introduction: On Gnosis and the Imaginary of the Modern/Colonial World System

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pp. 3-46

In the sixteenth century, Spanish missionaries judged and ranked human intelligence and civilization by whether the people were in possession of alphabetic writing. This was an initial moment in the configuration of the colonial difference and the building of the Atlantic imaginary, which will become the imaginary of the modern/colonial world. Translation was the...

PART ONE: IN SEARCH OF AN OTHER LOGIC

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Chapter 1 Border Thinking and the Colonial Difference

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pp. 49-88

IN MARCH 1998, I participated in a workshop jointly organized by the University of Tunisia and the Mediterranean Studies Group, from Duke University. The subject of my talk, which is a recurrent theme of this book, was the mapping of the racial foundation of modernity/coloniality. Basically, I explored the reconversion and formalization of...

PART TWO: I AM WHERE I THINK: THE GEOPOLITICS OF KNOWLEDGE AND COLONIAL EPISTEMIC DIFFERENCES

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Chapter 2 Post-Occidental Reason: The Crisis of Occidentalism and the Emergenc(y)e of Border Thinking

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pp. 91-126

“POSTCOLONIAL REASON” was the expression I used in the first version of this chapter (Mignolo 1994; 1996a; 1997c), but I soon realized that “postcolonial” criticism and theory was mainly employed by critics and intellectuals writing in English and in the domain of the British Empire and its ex-colonies (Australia, New Zeland, India). The entire...

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Chapter 3 Human Understanding and Local Interests: Occidentalism and the (Latin) American Argument

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pp. 127-171

IN THE FALL OF 1997 Irene Silverblatt and I cotaught an undergraduate seminar on “Modernity and Coloniality in Latin America.” In the spring of 1998 we repeated the seminar at the graduate level, as one of the core courses for the Latin American Cultural Studies certificate. Between the two seminars...

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Chapter 4 Are Subaltern Studies Postmodern or Postcolonial? The Politics and Sensibilities of Geohistorical Locations

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pp. 172-214

Theories travel, I heard, and when they get places, they are transformed, transcultured. But what happens when theories travel through the colonial difference? How do they get transcultured? I also heard that when theories get to places where colonial legacies are still in the memories of scholars and intellectuals, traveling theories may be perceived as new forms of colonization, rather than...

PART THREE: SUBALTERNITY AND THE COLONIAL DIFFERENCE: LANGUAGES, LITERATURES, AND KNOWLEDGES

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Chapter 5 "An Other Tongue": Linguistics Maps, Literary Geographies, Cultural Landscapes

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pp. 217-249

THE FIRST VERSION of this chapter1 was read at a conference on theoretical issues in Hispanic Studies, in November 1994. I remember, and I was not surprised, that one of the questions raised at the conference was why I chose to include Michele Cliff, a Jamaican author writing in English, in my argument. When I submitted the paper for its publication in the conference proceedings, one...

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Chapter 6 Bilanguaging Love: Thinking in between Languages

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pp. 250-277

LIVES ON the border (De Vos 1994) are conceived and experienced in and from different perspectives: either as the authenticity of the native cultures being harassed by globalization or as the authenticity of the North Atlantic (or Western) culture either in danger or still in its triumphal planetary march. The celebration of bi or pluri languaging...

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Chapter 7 Globalization/Mundialización: Civilizing Processes and the Relocation of Languages and Knowledges

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pp. 278-312

THAT “civilization” is somewhat related to “globalization” and “modern/colonial world system” is obvious. How it is related it not obvious. I submit that the colonial difference is one of the missing links between civilization, globalization, and modern/colonial world system. The attention Wallerstein devoted to “civilization” (Wallerstein 1992) is indeed...

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Afterword An Other Tongue, An Other Thinking, An Other Logic

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pp. 313-338

In chapter 2 I attempted to delineate the notion of post-Occidental reason and to locate it at the borders of modernity/coloniality. The argument kept in its horizon the internal borders of the modern/colonial world system, the historical density of its making (Arrighi 1994), and the diversity of the borders, becoming more...

Bibliography

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pp. 339-366

Index

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pp. 367-380