Feminist Border Thought

Authored by: Elena Ruiz-Aho

Routledge International Handbook of Contemporary Social and Political Theory

Print publication date:  March  2011
Online publication date:  March  2011

Print ISBN: 9780415548250
eBook ISBN: 9780203875575
Adobe ISBN: 9781135997946


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In Latin America, one of the ways in which Amerindian and mestizo (mixed-race) peoples have come to experience themselves as marginalized, both in their concrete public dealings and in history, concerns the ways in which the interpretive traditions of their indigenous communities have been covered-over and forced into concealment by European colonialism. In this regard, one of the greatest impacts of colonization has been a sense of inarticulacy (or discursive limitation) due to the loss of prior social contexts and the interpretive alternatives they made possible, particularly with regard to conceptions of selfhood and cultural identity. This is especially important given that, as colonialism introduced new gendered, ethnic, and racial categories not native to Mesoamerica (Quijano and Wallerstein 1992; Quijano 2000; Lugones 2007), it simultaneously instituted exclusionary practices on the basis of those categories. The need to theorize identity based on new social, historical, and epistemic realities thus marks the starting point of Latin American social and cultural theory in general (Sarmiento 1946; Vasconcelos 1948; Zea 1953; Paz 1961; Mariátegui 1971; Kusch 1973; Retamar 1974).

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