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The Decolonial Turn: A Discussion with Nelson Maldonado-Torres

Date and Time: 
Friday, November 3, 2017. 05:30 PM - 07:00 PM
Meeting Location: 
Humanities Center Boardroom
Concerning Violence: A Decolonial Collaborative Research Group
Meeting Description: 

Faculty and students are invited to join an open discussion with Professor Nelson Maldonado-Torres on the decolonial turn in Latin American studies and beyond. Different from the postcolonial, decoloniality makes reference, not only or primarily to the plight of formally colonized territories that obtained their independence in the twentieth century, but, more precisely, to the insurgent positionality of subjects and to the possibility of decolonization in the longue durée of modern/colonial cultures and structures. During the event, Professor Maldonado-Torres will recap his argument in a recently published essay on the decolonial turn, including questions such as the meaning and significance of the decolonial turn, the relationship between postcolonial and decolonial “studies,” and the relevance of ethnic studies for the decolonization of knowledge. We will also cover how decoloniality may help us re-frame contemporary developments, like the predicament of Puerto Rico in the wake of Hurricane Maria.

Nelson Maldonado-Torres is associate professor at the Department of Latino and Caribbean Studies at Rutgers University and one of the leading scholars writing on decoloniality in the United States. His first book, Against War: Views from the Underside of Modernity, examined the bases of modernity/coloniality in terms of a paradigm of war through the work of Enrique Dussel, Frantz Fanon, and Enmanuel Levinas.