The Darker Side of the Renaissance: Literacy, Territoriality, & Colonization
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The Darker Side of the Renaissance: Literacy, Territoriality, & Colonization

3.8 of 5 stars 3.80  ·  rating details  ·  40 ratings  ·  5 reviews
The Darker Side of the Renaissance weaves together literature, semiotics, history, historiography, cartography, and cultural theory to examine the role of language in the colonization of the New World. Exploring the many connections among writing, social organization, and political control, including how alphabetic writing is linked with the exercise of power, Walter D. Mi...more
Paperback, 488 pages
Published October 7th 2003 by University of Michigan Press (first published July 15th 1995)
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Modern Western philosophy is born out of the early colonizing experience in the Americas, according to Walter Mignolo. More specifically, Western ontology, phenomenology, hermeneutics, and cartography constructed the European “self” in contrast to the colonial (Amerindian) “other.” This construction of European-self came hand-in-hand in framing a worldview with Europe at its core. The origins of Western philosophy are currently formed around the writings of Kant and Hegel, in which the Enlighten...more
Categorizing this under "theory" because it's utterly choked with pomo and poco bullshit jargon that does more to obscure the meaning of the text than to elucidate in any helpful way the hermeneutics of Mignolo's approach. In this case, theory is a dirty word.

That said, this book is nowhere near so terrifyingly dense or incomprehensible as I had been led to believe it would be. Argues that the modern Occidentalization of the world can be traced back to the Renaissance, when the European struggle...more
Jason Williams
A lot of interesting information and connections, and I'm down with Mignolo's politics. On these terms, its a 5 star book.

But the info is buried under verbose and pompous literary jargon that really mitigates, and often replaces altogether, what could be the historical core and thesis of the book. (I really hate it when pedantic academic language substitutes for thesis and substance). He talks so much about "pluritopical hermeneutics" that he forgets to actually do it.

It could have been a 200 pa...more
Steven Salaita
Mignolo is a profound thinker with a serious commitment to decolonial scholarship, but this book is pretty heavy reading that uses too much jargon. It's still worth a look, though.
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The Idea of Latin America Local Histories/Global Designs: Coloniality, Subaltern Knowledges, and Border Thinking The Darker Side of Western Modernity: Global Futures, Decolonial Options Globalization and the Decolonial Option Elementos Para Una TeoríA Del Texto Literario

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