Freedom and The Human as Praxis: The Black, The Native, and Radical Anti-Colonial Thought

July 3-5, 2018
4.30-6.30 pm


The figure of the human emerged in western thought alongside the process of de-godding. It emerged when sovereign power was no longer divine. In western thought the appearance of free will meant that the human figure (then understood as European man) could be examined both as agent and object of study. As man emerged the history of the figure of human was tied to histories of natural history. However, the emergence of this discipline and field of study was connected to histories and practices of European colonialism. As European man became universal man the construction of difference shaped primarily by an epistime of resemblances worked out a set of histories and discursive practices in which race became the marker of hierarchy. The creation of the figure of the human as both agent and object of study was marked not only by gender but the issues of colonial and racial power.

Anthony Bogues (Ph.D., 1994, Political Theory, University of the West Indies, Mona)  is a  writer, scholar, curator, and the Director of the Center for the Study of Slavery and Justice; Professor of Africana Studies, Royce Professor of Teaching Excellence (2004-2007); and currently the Asa Messer Professsor of Humanities and Critical Theory. He is also an affiliated faculty member of the departments of Political Science, Modern Culture and Media. History of Art and Architecture and the Center for Latin American and Caribbean Studies. Bogues's major research and writing interests are intellectual, literary and cultural history, radical political thought, political theory, critical theory, Caribbean and African politics as well as Haitian, Caribbean, and African Art. He is the author of Caliban's Freedom: The Early Political Thought of C.L.R. James (1997); Black Heretics and Black Prophets: Radical Political Intellectuals (2003); and Empire of Liberty: Power, Freedom and Desire (2010). He is the co-convener of  the international  project "Towards a Global History of Poltiical Thought".