The geopolitics of sensibility and knowledge on colonialism, border thinking and epistemic disobedience

Journal Article

These reflections argue the need to analyze the geopolitics of feeling, thinking and knowing. Accomplishing this assumes disengagement from the universalist conception of knowledge. It must be accepted that knowledge constructed by modernity and Eurocentrism (since the Renaissance) is native or indigenous European knowledge (yes, Europeans are indigenous peoples too; they do not come from the moon), which became universal through the demanding support in economic matters by capitalism and its expansionist political project of the neoliberal nationstate. Today, we are witnessing the end of the 500-year cycle of Eurocentrism, and this situation has generated three paths that coexist and will coexist perhaps throughout the twenty-first century: 1) Political and economic de-Westernization based on epistemic disobedience, such as the economic policy of Singapore and China that says yes to capitalism, but no to neoliberalism; that is, capitalism with a strong state. 2) Re-Westernization, the response of the Obama administration to maintain Western leadership in crisis. The recent case of Syria is both an example of the Obama re-Westernizing project and the strength of the de-Westernization of Vladimir Putin that proposes peace and stopping the war project. 3) Finally, decolonization, which means disengagement from the colonial matrix of power in all its dimensions. Decolonization is not a project for a state, but a set of projects for the emerging global political society, not to be confused with the politicization of civil society, exemplified by indignant protests in Brazil and Turkey.

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Mignolo, W

Published Date

  • January 1, 2013

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 74 / 2

Start / End Page

  • 7 - 23

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0798-1171

Citation Source

  • Scopus