Decolonizing radical democracy

  • Jakeet SinghEmail author


This article explores some of the central challenges presented by decolonial thought to other critical, progressive, or emancipatory theories, especially theories of radical democracy. The article has two main aims. First it seeks to synthesize and highlight a number of key strands and interventions of contemporary decolonial thought. It does so through a reading of several decolonial literatures including the Latin American modernity/coloniality school, as well as research in Indigenous Studies and Settler Colonial Studies focused largely on the Anglo settler colonies of Canada, the United States, Australia, and New Zealand. Three key thematics of decolonial thought are drawn out and explicated in this survey: (1) modernity/coloniality, (2) land, and (3) ethico-political resurgences. The second aim is to show what kind of work is done by these decolonial interventions by using them to interrogate Chantal Mouffe’s theory of radical democracy.


Chantal Mouffe radical democracy decolonization modernity coloniality subaltern imperialism hegemony 



The author would like to thank Janet Conway, Glen Coulthard, Robert Nichols, and Erin Durban-Albrecht for their feedback on earlier drafts of this paper, as well as audiences at the New School for Social Research and the Canadian Political Science Association who heard an earlier version of many of the arguments made here. The author would also like to acknowledge the journal’s editors and anonymous reviewers for their very helpful comments and suggestions.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Limited 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of PoliticsYork UniversityTorontoCanada

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