"Introduction: On the Imperative, Challenges and Prospects of Decolonizing Comparative Methodologies"
Donahue, Amy K.
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To reflect on coloniality is not to study the history of colonialism from the safety of a “postcolonial” present. Rather, it requires one to interrogate ongoing legacies of colonialism, not only in parts of the world that were once, or continue to be, dominated and ruled by Western European nations, including the United States, but also in elements of discourse such as “the West” and “modernity,” which were and are constituted through colonial practices of subjugation, derogation, and dehumanization. In his contribution to this special issue, David Kim asks, “Who can seriously doubt that global Western imperialism occurred and did so with enduring consequences, [and] that Eurocentrism continues to distort the epistemic landscape of Western culture, politics, and philosophy…?” Postcolonial and decolonial studies, broadly defined, aim to make this contemporary condition of coloniality theoretically and empirically visible. The terms “postcolonial” and “decolonial” indicate an ongoing critical engagement with coloniality, a legacy that modern colonial empires inaugurated that has proven to endure far beyond the ostensible end of European colonial history...