The Darker Side of the Renaissance: Literacy, Territoriality, & Colonization, 2nd Edition

Overview


The Darker Side of the Renaissance weaves together literature, semiotics, history, historiography, cartography, and cultural theory to examine the role of language in the colonization of the New World. Exploring the many connections among writing, social organization, and political control, including how alphabetic writing is linked with the exercise of power, Walter D. Mignolo claims that European forms of literacy were at the heart of New World colonization. It has long been acknowledged that Amerindians were ...
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Overview


The Darker Side of the Renaissance weaves together literature, semiotics, history, historiography, cartography, and cultural theory to examine the role of language in the colonization of the New World. Exploring the many connections among writing, social organization, and political control, including how alphabetic writing is linked with the exercise of power, Walter D. Mignolo claims that European forms of literacy were at the heart of New World colonization. It has long been acknowledged that Amerindians were at a disadvantage in facing European invaders because native cultures did not employ the same kind of texts (hence "knowledge") that the Europeans valued. Yet no one but Mignolo has so thoroughly examined either the process or the implications of conquest and destruction through language. The book continues to challenge commonplace understandings of New World history and to stimulate new colonial and postcolonial scholarship.

Walter D. Mignolo is Professor in the Department of Romance Studies and the Program in Literature, Duke University.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780472089314
  • Publisher: University of Michigan Press
  • Publication date: 10/7/2003
  • Edition description: Second Edition
  • Edition number: 2
  • Pages: 488
  • Sales rank: 1,464,147
  • Product dimensions: 6.10 (w) x 9.20 (h) x 1.20 (d)

Table of Contents

Preface
Introduction: On Describing Ourselves Describing Ourselves: Comparatism, Differences, and Pluritopic Hermeneutics 1
Pt. 1 The Colonization of Languages
Ch. 1 Nebrija in the New World: Renaissance Philosophy of Language and the Spread of Western Literacy 29
Ch. 2 The Materiality of Reading and Writing Cultures: The Chain of Sounds, Graphic Signs, and Sign Carriers 69
Pt. 2 The Colonization of Memory
Ch. 3 Record Keeping without Letters and Writing Histories of People without History 125
Ch. 4 Genres as Social Practices: Histories, Enkyclopaideias, and the Limits of Knowledge and Understanding 171
Pt. 3 The Colonization of Space
Ch. 5 The Movable Center: Ethnicity, Geometric Projections, and Coexisting Territorialities 219
Ch. 6 Putting the Americas on the Map: Cartography and the Colonization of Space 259
Afterword: On Modernity, Colonization, and the Rise of Occidentalism 315
Notes 335
Bibliography 385
Index 415
Second Thoughts on The Darker Side of the Renaissance: Afterword to the Second Edition 427
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