Hybridity and Mestizaje: Sincretism or Subversive Complicity? Subalternity from the Perspective of the Coloniality of Power

  • Ramón Grosfoguel
Part of the New Directions in Latino American Cultures book series (NDLAC)


Any intercultural or north/south dialogue must begin by identifying the coordinates of global power. One cannot hope for transparent communication, or aspire to an ideal communication community a la Habermas, without identifying the relations of global power and the silenced, excluded “others,” ignored or exterminated by global coloniality of power (Quijano, 2000). Any intercultural dialogue must take as its premise that we do not live in a horizontal world of cultural relations. Horizontality implies a false equality that does not contribute in any way to a productive dialogue between north and south. We should begin by recognizing that we live in a world in which relations between cultures are vertical, between dominated and dominators, colonized and colonizers. This verticality institutes important problems. One of them is how northern privileges—won through the exploitation and domination of global coloniality—impact communication, intercultural exchange and dialogue with the south. Before any such dialogue can occur, one must begin by recognizing the inequalities of power and the complicity of the north in the south’s exploitation.


Colonial Power Global Power Binary Opposition Peripheral Country Colonial Administration 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Alexandra Isfahani-Hammond 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ramón Grosfoguel

There are no affiliations available

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