A Distant View. Globalization inside Philosophy

Synthesis Philosophica 24 (1):117-130 (2009)
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When tackling with the issue of globalization in the context of philosophy, this article takes somewhat different route than expected: it doesn’t ponder upon the meaning and the consequences of the processes we call ‘global’, but instead tries to find out how philosophy, theoretical and literary production themselves have been affected by globalization. Instead of an attempt to immediately “think the globalization” it tries to show what “globalization has done to thinking”. In order to illustrate this point three main areas to be explored are taken into account: Africa, Latin America and India. They are chosen on the basis of being representative regions of the so-called “Third-World” or “Global South”. Main idea, taken from the arguments of P. Hountondji is that philosophical and theoretical productions mimic economic one; a fortiori: they are actually the same process. This point is illustrated in a number of cases. Further, the paper tries to show that, in spite of huge differences in hermeneutical outlooks, geographical distance and successive traditions, all “Third-World” philosophical/literary production faces similar fate, what could be a consequence of its structural positioning in a contemporary “World-System”. However, the authors who come from “peripheral” areas of theoretical production don’t only face similar problems but, as shown, also share similar ideas of what could be done in order to minimize and level out the imbalance and asymmetrical position of their cultures



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