Nelson Maldonado-Torres

Nelson Maldonado-Torres: Sobre a Colonialidade doSer and El Mostrador

Please check out two new items from Professor Nelson Maldonado-Torres: a new translation of his writings in Portuguese, and a reference to his work in El Mostrador, a Chilean newspaper.

Congratulations, Nelson!

Sobre a Colonialidade do Ser (On the Coloniality of Being)

About the coloniality of being is a text written with the blood of the victims of coloniality, historical logos that had been established since the colonization started in 1492, with the violent creation – and not innocent discovery – of the New World. Unlike many European and Eurocentric narratives about the genesis of modernity and its main characteristics, Maldonado-Torres takes into account the idea present in many decolonial studies, according to which modernity is born with coloniality and, therefore, it is necessary to talk about modernity-coloniality, to make it clear that coloniality is not a side effect of modernity, something that could be fixed or uprooted without calling into question the essence of modernity. Rather, coloniality is the lifeblood of modernity, statement that confronts Europe's boastful ways of understanding the modernity of its history. For this reason, the Cartesian cogito is not the striking sign of the origin of modernity, a kind of immobile engine or axial point moving all the tradition founded by it. As Enrique Dussel showed, the ego conquers (the I conquer) is the condition of possibility of Descartes' own thought, which is why modernity is marked by political-economic-epistemological relations of domination and subjection of non-Europe by Europe.

Purchase the book in Portuguese here

El Mostrador

"Alexander Ortiz Ocaña and Decolonialism"


Throughout the history of the human and social sciences there have been several turns, such as the linguistic turn, the hermeneutical turn, the phenomenological turn, the configurative turn, the socio-critical turn. Following that same logic, the Puerto Rican philosopher Nelson Maldonado Torres coined the term 'decolonial turn', which has been followed by many authors of our America, including us.

The decolonial turn implies the search to start building knowledge from the particular context of each region, from conceptualized and situated knowledge, looking at ourselves and without the need to import knowledge from other regions, other countries or other contexts

Read the full article here