Political Theories of Decolonization Postcolonialism and the Problem of Foundations


Recent scholarship in political theory has focused on the treatment of colonialism in the writings of canonical thinkers such as Locke, Burke, Mill, Diderot, Tocqueville, Smith, and Kant, revealing the extent to which the subject of colonialism and imperialism dominated the minds of great thinkers as the colonial project took place. While such scholarship provides fascinating insight into the possible problems of enlightenment thought, it tends to ignore the voices of thinkers who spoke from the position of the colonized. This book will fill a gap in postcolonial political critique by serving as an introduction to theorists who struggled with the question of how to found a new political order when the existing ideas and institutions were implicated in a history of domination. Looking at the writings of Gandhi, Ngugi, al-Afghani, and Mariategui, among several others, the authors aim to explain how the work of these thinkers engage in thematic continuities - constituting "postcolonial political thought" - and add to liberal democratic understandings of political power, as well as illuminate how many of the central questions of political theory are imaginatively explored by postcolonial writers.

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