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Barbarian Theorizing and the Limits of Latin American Exceptionalism Author(s): Joshua Lund Source: Cultural Critique, No.

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BARBARIAN ANDTHELIMITS THEORIZING AMERICAN EXCEPTIONALISM OF LATIN
Joshua Lund

important concepts for Latin American(ist) cultural criticism1 define the focus of this essay: exceptionalism and Eurocentrism. The objective of my critique is to interrogate the limits of Latin American exceptionalism by placing it in dialectical tension with Eurocentrism. I aim to signal the ways in which exceptionalism as a mode of theorizing Latin American singularity-while ultimately a critical endeavor-tends to overlook its own symptomatic relationship with Eurocentrism, and thereby succumbs to the same problems that it identifies in Eurocentric discourse. Exceptionalism, I propose, is not simply a reaction to or result of external factors, such as Latin America's marginalization from the construction of Western knowledge. It is also a symptom of the tenacity of Eurocentrism within Latin American(ist) criticism. Just as Eurocentrism elides the intellectual contribution of peripheral or subaltern cultures to the epistemological constitution of the so-called West, so does exceptionalism reach its limits by focusing attention upon this very issue. Left aside is the engagement with epistemologies uncommonly, if ever, taken seriously in the rarefied discourses of Western knowledge production. At stake then is the role of the Latin American(ist) intellectual as complicit in the erasure of the epistemological plurality of Latin America. The vehicles that will allow me to advance this critique include two critical methods put forth in recent years by Walter Mignolo: colonial semiosis2 and barbarian theorizing.3 After a brief discussion of the main tenets behind these ideas, I will then place Mignolo in dialogue with three other cultural theorists, whose works belong to
Cultural Critique47-Winter 2001-Copyright 2001 Regents of the Universityof Minnesota

Two

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BARBARIANTHEORIZING | 55

an earlier critical moment: sociologist Fernando Ortiz's Contrapunteo cubano del tabaco y el azucar (1940); anthropologist Bronislaw Malinowski's introduction (1940) to Ortiz's text; and literary theorist and sociocritic Antonio Candido's "Literatura e cultura de 1900 a 1945" (1950). Through Mignolo and his predecessors, I will show both the critical possibilities and problematic limits of exceptionalist discourse for the study of the object called "Latin America." However, in order to realize such a critique, the key terminology that I employ will require some unpacking. Thus, explication of what I mean by exceptionalism and Eurocentrism seems warranted.

Exceptionalism Two postulates, in dialectical tension, constitute Latin American exceptionalism. These assumptions cannot be proposed as sociocultural, empirical facts, even problematically. In other words, they can only be understood as critical tendenciesthat stem from a history of discursive effects whose primary causes, in the last instance, will always defy satisfactory disentanglement. Thus what I offer here is neither an endorsement nor a disavowal, but rather a statement of the component parts of the Latin American(ist) discourse that I am calling "exceptionalism":4 (1) Latin America is perceived to be a space where so-called universal theories of culture or society "don't fit." This position is well-known, and we could trace its clearly articulated form as far back as Sim6n Bolivar. (2) While "universal" theory so often finds itself poorly placed in Latin America, Latin America becomes a (geographical and discursive) space from which "universal" theories do not emerge.6 Given that the universalization of a theory is simply a euphemism for its canonization in patently local Western academia, the implication here is that, in the relevant parts of the world from which knowledge is produced, ideas emanating from Latin America are typically misunderstood, ignored, or erased.7 This side of Latin American exceptionalism is far more difficult to pin down, and yet more important to the commentary that follows. Perhaps a quick story can help clarify the operations of this set of critical assumptions. In his introduction to Fernando Ortiz's monumental study of cultural transformation in Cuba-Contrapunteo cubano-Bronislaw Malinowski makes a promise. He reports that

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above) plays out in Ortiz's theoretical breakthrough itself: transculturation is proposed as a corrective to the dominant ("universal") model of acculturation. The second proposition ([2]. Angel Rama reminds us of this encomium. "transculturation. however. 4 May 2013 13:59:13 PM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . speaks to both sides of Latin American exceptionalism. Fernando Coronil confirms that Malinowski does in fact invoke transculturation in two later sources. then. Rama is uncharacteristically hasty in citing Malinowski's forgetfulness. in short. a functionalist notion that for Ortiz was incapable of effectively analyzing cultural change in Cuba." it must be mentioned that Ortiz does not introduce transculturation until 1940. Intentions. While perhaps letting Malinowski off the hook by unearthing his uses of transculturation. In another introduction to Cuban Counterpoint (1995). Rama's disappointment with Malinowski. we are told. Typically a careful and wide reader of anthropology.32. seems paranoid. and that Malinowski dies only two years later. Exceptionalism. and then back again. did Malinowski apply the term "transculturation" in his own work.82. through which original and potentially improved hermeneutic tools arise. shows itself as a positive force.8 Years later. above) introduces the problematic question of intentions.9 This brief tracing of the reception of an idea as it moves from south to north. cannot be completely discarded. Coronil substantiates the spirit of Rama's misplaced comment by documenting the literal and apparently active sublation of Ortiz in widely distributed literature This content downloaded from 74. and use it constantly and loyally whenever I had occasion to do so" (lviii). in Transculturacion narrativaen America Latina (1982). The first proposition ([1].56 | JOSHUA LUND upon learning of Ortiz's now-famous neologism. characterizing it as an apparent act of bad faith: never again. but it is not reducible to that concern." So eager is Malinowski's reception of the novel term that he happily provides the following confession to the reader: "I promised its author that I would appropriate the new expression for my own use." his "instant response" was one of "enthusiastic acceptance." While twice is slightly less satisfying than "constantly and loyally.97 on Sat. Rama's role in the anecdote speaks loudly here. acknowledging its paternity. as replacing "Malinowski" with a term such as "metropolitan anthropology" brings new legitimacy to Rama's claim. once even fulfilling his promise by "acknowledging its paternity.

Barbarism Eurocentrism is one of those unwieldy concepts whose force we all feel.e. and explore its critical limits through its dialectical relationship with Eurocentrism. how Western discursive practices (metropolitan anthropology. or what Schwarz calls a critical malaise. and Malinowski. I will center my attention on the exceptionalist conversation itself. rather obvious). within Latin American(ist) discourse. exemplifies the limits of Latin American exceptionalism as a viable response to Eurocentrism. situating his critique under the rubric of some pertinent conversations that have come before. A brief discussion of Eurocentrism. it is not a paper strictly about his work. I contend that his "barbarian theorizing. While both of these questions will necessarily fold into my critique. nor will I focus upon why a figure like Rama would invoke an exceptionalist argument (the reasons being. the feeling of exclusion is there. I propose to read with and against Mignolo. Civilization. then. namely the aforementioned Ortiz. yet which resists any facile definition.) marginalize Latin American intellectual production. Therefore.BARBARIANTHEORIZING 1 57 of metropolitan anthropology. contemporary participant in this long-standing. would seem to stem from a complex matrix of factors.82.11 As stated. including but not limited to intentionality.10 Exceptionalism. Eurocentrism. etc. my primary interest is not to explain an external cause of Latin American exceptionalism.32. Candido. representing what we might call the negative side of Latin American exceptionalism. 4 May 2013 13:59:13 PM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . and whose theoretical This content downloaded from 74. Walter Mignolo is an active. With or without intentions. then. While Mignolo makes some remarkable and welcome moves toward the theorization of interpreting cultural contact.12 While the following is heavily indebted to Mignolo. what Garcia Marquez has so rigorously and eloquently theorized as the solitude of Latin America. will provide the transition from exceptionalism to the contemporary interventions of Mignolo. and its relationship to barbarism (as in barbarian theorizing).97 on Sat. however. at some level." especially when read through some of the prescriptions put forth in his own earlier work.. i. exceptionalist conversation. the real interest lies in what exceptionalist discourse means for the study of Latin America.

India. itself not only in Europe and the United States. invading. but rather to the politico-economic hegemony that it gains by finding. is the standard object of critique in anti-Eurocentric discourse and is based on the argument that "Europe had exceptional internal characteristics that allowed it to supersede. which we could perhaps call an endogenous model. 4 May 2013 13:59:13 PM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . all other cultures" ("Beyond Eurocentrism.. and conquering the Americas.97 on Sat. and China" (5). following Immanuel Wallerstein. for Dussel). This version of Eurocentrism is well known and needs no rehearsal here." 3). Dussel's relatively simple inversion of Eurocentrism (from cause to effect) is theoretically important because it forces us to engage Eurocentrism not as a fact of life that simply exists.l3 In proposing his two paradigms of modernity. posits a historical model that places Europe as a geopolitical and economic (and only later epistemological) center of what Dussel. The first. Europe's centrality. The endogenous version of Eurocentrism-that would later "impose .82. Dussel simultaneously theorizes two readings of Eurocentrism. but in the entire intellectual realm of the world periphery" (3-4) and that would "allow Europe to transform itself in [sic] something like the 'reflexive consciousness' (modern philosophy) of world history" (5)-is thus the effect. of Europe as world "center. more suggestive reading. from the spice routes of India to the eventual consolidation of the North Atlantic trade circuit.and not the cause. then. The other. no longer as philosopher-king. maintains Europe's centrality. The key formulation of Eurocentrism that I invoke throughout this paper stems from the work of liberation philosopher Enrique Dussel. is not due to an intrinsic superiority (in any cultural category..32." This Americocentric critique of Eurocentrism then. through its rationality. calls the "first world-system" (4). It is precisely the management of this integration that "will give Europe the determining comparativeadvantage over the Ottoman-Muslim world.14 This world-system can only be initiated when "Europe"15integrates the so-called New World into a global economic circuit. but as something that must be produced. The rhetorical elements of this production This content downloaded from 74.LUND 58 | JOSHUA dissemination should perhaps require us to speak of various Eurocentrisms. while rejecting all notions of intrinsic European superiority. allowing it to yank the center westward. but now as manager of a world-system.

97 on Sat. America. European) in confrontation with a flattened heterogeneity of cultures assigned the role of one barbarous periphery (i. most forcefully articulated in his aptly titled Facundo:Civilizacion y barbarie(1845). 4 May 2013 13:59:13 PM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . The other three parts-America.BARBARIANTHEORIZING | 59 rely upon Europe's ability to convincingly posit and promote the transformation of a constellation of potential centers and peripheries into a single. and then. While both can apply. Africa. in colonial moments the border dividing center from periphery is usually synonymous with that dividing the colonizing culture from the colonized culture. with greater or lesser efficacy.18the discourse has a history as durable and malleable as Eurocentrism itself. 134). in neo. with the ample assistance of ascendant European economic. Spain vis-a-vis New Spain. installs itself (whether exported or imported is irrelevant here. as the once contestable and relative assortment of civilizations and barbarisms (China vis-a-vis Europe.19 Solely for the purposes of this essay.32. The most implacable Latin American appropriation of Eurocentrism is a center/periphery discourse known as civilization and barbarism (civilizacidn y barbarie). "for the first time. the border may be This content downloaded from 74. political. stable antinomy.16While the center/periphery model for analyzing culture has legions of critics. Sarmiento's nineteenth-century formulation of centralized and expansive state power (vis-a-vis the gaucho and indigenous inhabitants of the Argentine pampa). Europe declares itself as the center. etc. Muslim Arabia vis-a-vis Christian Europe. I wish to make an important semantic distinction between the Eurocentric models of center/periphery and civilization/barbarism.82.e. again. capitalist. with the discovery of the fourth part of the world.) are transformed and reified into one civilized center (Christian. I would like to avoid questions of intention if possible) far outside the geographical confines of Europe proper. in which it alone becomes central.or postcolonial moments. the civilizations of the non-European world.Often associated with Domingo F. and military power. oft-summarized as the so-called Third World). the rest of the world peripheral: in the sixteenth century.. The following centuries would witness Europe's great epistemological coup. and Asia-commence their history as the periphery" (Invention. to a limitless number of sociocultural situations.17 Dussel's recuperation of it helps us understand Eurocentrism as a discourse that is produced locally.

and undo. leading only to another reassembled-yet still relatively stable and. His colonial semiosis offers suggestive strategies for pursuing such a task. It urges us to take seriously the plurality of epistemologies that produce the originary formulations of and resistances to European colonial expansion (primarily in fifteenth. I argue that Mignolo fails to see the ways in which Eurocentrism itself. the peripheral/barbarous can only make feeble attempts at imitationare a driving force behind the exceptionalist angst in Latin America. with its constant slippage toward static binaries. In short.21 He seeks to This content downloaded from 74. postcolonial context.82.through seventeenth-century Spain and America). unsatisfyingbinary. is frustrating his recent attempts to reinscribe a multiplicity of ways of knowing into current conversations of both academic and social urgency. has proven to be more problematic. and I will hold my analysis and critique until the following sections. Mignolo's recent endorsement of what he calls barbarian theorizing quickly runs into the detritus of Eurocentrism. While recognizing the importance of dismantling Sarmiento's binary. hence. Building upon this work in order to transport his insights from the interpretation of that historical moment to a contemporary. The discourse of civilization and barbarism represents the installation of Eurocentrism within Latin America.97 on Sat.32. From Colonial Semiosis to Barbarian Theorizing "Colonial semiosis" is Mignolo's contribution to the varied attempts to break down and decenter the imperialist logic that insistently translates the center/periphery of world systems into the studier/ studied or theorizer/theorized of scholarly discourse. reproducing its binary ossification of cultures and epistemologies in a process of internal colonialism: specifically.60 | JOSHUA LUND rearticulated as falling between First and Third World. Mignolo's work represents important attempts to grapple with. Latin American. metropolitan centers of modernizing ("civilized") political power vis-a-vis the marginalized ("barbarous") communities largely denied access to national forms of political agency.20 The cultural implications behind the hegemony of these models-the central/civilized defines the cultural "standard". The remainder of this section will simply rehearse the basic tenets of colonial semiosis and barbarian theorizing. 4 May 2013 13:59:13 PM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . these legacies of Eurocentrism.

Ribeiro appropriates This content downloaded from 74. operating within the binary framework of "civilization and barbarism. In this schema.) as knowledge-producing languages.e. what Mignolo describes as "theorizing from/of the third world (the expression used metaphorically here) for the . etc.97 on Sat. This multiperspectivist gesture is neither radical nor particularly new.. can be posited as one who practices barbarian theorizing by virtue of his lived experience "in communities that have been precisely subalternized and placed in the margins by the very concept and expansion of European civilization" (50). which strives toward new ways of understanding the colonial encounter in the Americas. to the contemporary arena of postcolonial critique. He thus affirms a plurality of epistemological communities as productive "loci of enunciation" (and their inhabitants as knowing subjects) for the formulation of cultural and social critique. Like Caliban learning to curse. relevance "for the entire planet" (51). A key prescription of Mignolo's colonial semiosis is his call for a pluritopic hermeneutics. entire planet" ("Globalization. Quechua. including the self-reflexive recognition of one's own locus of enunciation.24 "Barbarian theorizing" transports Mignolo's privileging of space and the historicization of subjective positionality from the coeval discourses of a colonial context. i.. basically asserts the productivity of reading critical and historical moments across cultures from the perspective of various epistemological traditions. despite the intimidating vocabulary. 4 May 2013 13:59:13 PM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . leading to his "semiosis" (a plurality of sign-systems).82.23 Mignolo's real contribution lies elsewhere: in his importation of this prescription to colonial studies in order to interrogate the critical limits of "discourse" (privileging alphabetic writing).22 Explicit in such a practice is the historicization of all possible "loci of enunciation" (the epistemological space from where one speaks)." 51).. but rather appropriates and supersedes civilizing tools of knowledge production (45)." the barbarian is not finally overcome by civilization.32. As its name implies. although trained as a Western anthropologist and steeped in the social and academic privilege of dominating several languages of colonial power.BARBARIANTHEORIZING | 61 dissolve the binary that maintains Third World spatialities as knowable objects by reinscribing the marginal languages of modernity (Spanish. it can best be summarized as a practice. Thus a figure such as Darcy Ribeiro (Mignolo's example). which. assuming a theoretical legitimacy that demands admittance into global conversations.

and their more straightforward attempts to theorize Latin American cultural processes. quotation-mark treatment. Ortiz's and Candido's primary roles as professional intellectuals (as opposed to artists or poets). Framed as barbarian theorists. the two Latin American contributions to cultural criticism that I introduce at this point--Ortiz's transculturation. "Conversation" here receives the postmodern. are the factors that place him at the border: "border as threshold and liminality. The "Third World theoreticians"-the Cuban Ortiz and the Brazilian Candido-that structure the following discussion can be understood as two examples.32. The figure of Malinowski will loom large as a First World counterpoint to the "barbarian theorizing" carried out by Ortiz and Candido. as a geographical and epistemological location" (50)." combined with his desire to speak from the margin.82.26However. As mentioned. as two sides connected by a bridge.25 From this rough sketch emerges an entire genealogy of barbarian theorists in Latin America.LUND 62 | JOSHUA the hegemonic tools of Eurocentrism (in this case. what can these thinkers tell us about the productivity and limits of Latin American exceptionalism? ORTIZ.97 on Sat. and Candido's valorization of the Brazilian essay-are premised on exceptionalist concerns. then. Ribeiro's Brazilian perspective. CANDIDO. allow me to maintain a certain consistency with Mignolo's aforementioned example of barbarian theorizing found in Ribeiro. academic training) in order to provide a forceful critique of "the civilizing process. but for and to two worlds. I hope to read their "conversation" through the prescriptions contained within colonial semiosis and barbarian theorizing in order to probe the critical limits of Latin American exceptionalism.27 The principal aim of This content downloaded from 74. AND MALINOWSKI None of the thinkers engaged here offers a viable exit from the problem of exceptionalism in Latin American(ist) critical discourse. Indeed. because many dialogues surrounding the topic of Latin American exceptionalism are much more "real" than the one that I have contrived here. 4 May 2013 13:59:13 PM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . his identification as a "Third World theoretician." For Mignolo. both positive and negative.

academic.82. as well as the self-conscious recognition of the center from which one enunciates. Its premises. and Malinowski is not to criticize them as such. Candido's exceptionalist essay offers us a way of reading Ortiz that leads to conclusions about the value of his work that differ strikingly from the reading by Malinowski.32. the cultural moment that will be at issue here is postcolonial. 4 May 2013 13:59:13 PM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . Mignolo's most methodical a coloapplication of colonial semiosis is aimed-appropriately-at nial context. Whereas colonial semiosis allows Mignolo to rethink the relationship between the conquest and the European Renaissance. Contrapunteocubano. Whether the performance to be understood is colonial or postcolonial. and far more specific in nature: the interpretation of Ortiz's bestknown work. while Mignolo will momentarily fade from the immediate field of vision." 129).97 on Sat. the attempt to expand the prescriptions of colonial semiosis to a truly plural set of epistemological communities stumbles with the introduction of barbarian theorizing. In the end. have transhistorical implications also relevant to the analysis of contemporary interpretative struggles: "understanding and constructing colonial semiosis (the dialectic between official stories and suppressed voices. Candido.BARBARIANTHEORIZING | 63 the following commentary on Ortiz. between signs from different cultural traditions) implies a plurality of conflictive and coexisting worlds and requires a multidimensional hermeneutic" ("Colonial and Postcolonial. despite the critically and politically important distinctions that pluritopic interpretation of Ortiz suggests. Thus. however.The relevance and effect of engaging this work pluritopically-in the spirit of colonial semiosis-will be displayed by reading it through two distinct loci of enunciation: Malinowski's essay that introduces the work and Candido's critical intervention in Latin American literary theory. while certainly giving rise to new problems of its own. his ideas will inform the reading that follows. barbarian theorizing This content downloaded from 74. the productive understanding of it depends upon a "pluritopic hermeneutics" or the construction of various "centers" from which to posit interpretation. defusing the possibility of a radical interpretive impact contained therein. As we saw in the previous section. However. but rather to construct a frame through which to discuss Latin American exceptionalism and the way in which it inflects Mignolo's attempts to destabilize Eurocentrism. In short.

Coronil has pointed out the paucity of metropolitan anthropological literature that adopts the term. and Candido. Its exceptionalist intentions were literally just such an attempted usurpation. Ortiz's critical audacity would amount to barbarian theorizing. it wasn't. Ortiz through Malinowski Ortiz's Contrapunteocubanodel tabacoy el azucar is an analysis of cultural change in Cuba. some brief comments regarding the famous and even fashionable theory are useful in terms of orientation. almost exclusively for its status as the source of the term "transculturation.32.29At its best.30 The term has been nuanced and reworked in Latin American(ist) theory and criticism far beyond its original social anthropological context. how was it received in the metropole? For the most part.31 In Mignolo's theoretical parlance. but the reverse is true as well. It is frequently cited in Latin American literary and cultural studies." a widely invoked metropolitan (central) theory of cultural change. Malinowski.64 I JOSHUA LUND takes us no further than the exceptionalism invoked by Candido fifty years ago.82." A full account of the work and the theory would require a book-length study. 4 May 2013 13:59:13 PM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions .28 However. it has been celebrated as something of a theoretical coup for its time. individual subjects) with a cultural and historical agency that holds an obvious attraction for postcolonial scholarship.97 on Sat. transculturation becomes a theory that too quickly elides questions of power and has consistently ignored its own hypermasculine gendering. transculturation endows marginalized cultures (and later. and while its basic assertion seems slightly banal by today's standards. The critical impulse of Ortiz's transculturation is the contrapuntal "toma y daca" [give and take] that defines cultural contact: not only does a "weaker" (peripheral) culture take on the traits of a "stronger" (central) one. and This content downloaded from 74. Given that transculturation was selfconsciously positioned against acculturation. A more thorough elaboration of this problem will stem from the following discussion of Ortiz. as it was very consciously proposed as a Cuban (peripheral) improvement upon (and thus replacement of) "acculturation. especially with Rama's appropriation of the term. At its worst.

and it proposed neither unambiguous solutions nor a blueprint for the future. Second. For one. and a detailed historical interpretation" (xi-ii). xxxii-v).. The accompanying suggestion that it has remained somewhat obscured from view due to its resistance to political polarization. Coronil's summary of the formal workings of Contrapunteocubano is beautifully articulated and accurate. Ortiz's highly rhetorical and ambiguous style is not unique. given the either/or choice between socialism and capitalism: "Ortiz's book did not quite fit the terms of this polarized debate. an immediate and weighty endorsement of the term comes from Malinowski in his introduction to the first editions (in both Spanish and English) of Contrapunteo cubano.33Finally. It was unconventional in form and content .32 As we have already seen. the other issue that dominates Malinwoski's attention is what strikes him as the rather curious and irregular form of Contrapunteocubanoitself. arriving to the "center" (again) not through the social sciences per se. it worked tangentially through poetic allusion. Thus. Rather than straightforwardly offering an argument. but through Latin American literary studies (xxxvi). literariness.97 on Sat. Aside from his extraordinary approbation (and subsequent containment) of transculturation as a productive anthropological theory (Coronil. however. critics typically make some note of its. When commenting specifically upon Ortiz's work. for lack of a better term. it seems to me more productive to understand its This content downloaded from 74.32. could be more nuanced.82. a certain First World bemusement over Ortiz's literariness was apparent before the polarization wrought by the Cold War was established. as I am about to demonstrate through Malinowski. rather than read Ortiz's rhetorical style as clashing with the political narratives of contemporary modernity (which it perhaps does).. 4 May 2013 13:59:13 PM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions .BARBARIANTHEORIZING | 65 shows how its acceptance is most visible in Latin American cultural theory. however. any implication that Ortiz and transculturation have ever disappeared from the Latin American(ist) scene is false. Coronil links this typical problematization of Ortiz's literature qua social science to its refusal to enter the conversation regarding what path Latin American modernization should take. brief theoretical comments. but rather belongs to a tradition of scholarly writing in Latin America that predates him and that has remained relevant until today (see the following section on Candido).

Malinowski here offers a contrapuntal analysis of his own: for every mention of Ortiz's "fascinating" prose. Ortiz's form of analysis defies the hegemony of scientism that marks their historical moment. he sees the clear benefits to his legacy of incorporating a prominent intellectual of the periphery into his functionalist school of thought (Coronil. Malinowski feels compelled to account for the rhetorical nature of the essay by insisting upon its analytical rigor: The intelligentreaderwill take account of the wealth of soberscientific labor and social analysis underlying the brilliantoutwardform of the essay.97 on Sat. The incessant seepage of the literary into the scientific (or Ortiz's refusal of objective distance) presents a problem for Malinowski. deserving of serious attention from his colleagues. After authenticating Ortiz as a first-rate contributor to sociology. Thus the almost apologetic tone creeping around Malinowski's words of praise: he is intent on convincing us that the foregoing essay really is solid work.. it is something to be simply tolerated by the expert. first the initial definition of what he means by "counterpoint. a flaw. in spite of its poetic way with words. ethnography. Notable in Malinowski's aforementioned praise for the work is the way in which he goes about selling his endorsement. 4 May 2013 13:59:13 PM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . trasts and differences in this Counterpoint.82. eventually yielding the spoils of "concrete and descriptive information. In a word. Then he sets about translating his brilliantphrasesinto concrete and descriptive (lxi. and related practices. On the one hand. Dr. Ortiz gives us employing documentation as soundas it is unpedantic.66 | JOSHUA LUND formal elements as problematic for the more broadly construed instrumental rationality privileged by Eurocentric ways of knowing and the subsequent U. so much tropical underbrush to be cut down by First World objective analysis. xxxi).32. my emphases) information." Coronil notes that "Malinowski saw himself as no ordinary anthropologist..S. there is a hurried assurance of the work's "concrete" value. While the lyricism lends the work an "unpedantic" aura attractive to the layman. imperialism that these epistemologies legitimize. the fascinatingplayof wordsand the ingenious setting forth of conIn clear and vivid language. On the other hand. but as one who combined literary sensitivity with This content downloaded from 74.".

First. Later. Instead.82. The politics of this move. This adds a perplexing dimension to Malinowski's difficulty with and eventual misreading of Ortiz's rhetorical style.34 However. as would the benefits" (lxiv). His is a power move that evades a serious consideration of the power at play in the intellectual exchange between centers and peripheries. what Malinowski fails to account for is the way in which his own locus of enunciation interferes with his representation of Ortiz. in concluding his essay. For Malinowski. In the prologue that buffers Ortiz from Malinowski's paternalism. in fact. His implicit apology for Contrapunteocubano's "problematic" form can perhaps be read as a good faith attempt to introduce Ortiz into the theoretical debates of the center. It was not that Malinowski couldn't understand (grammatically or politically) what Ortiz was saying. he forecloses the highly political and metaphorical aspects of transculturation.97 on Sat. Malinowski attempts the wholesale incorporation of Ortiz into the dominant discursive fold. Contrapunteocubano does not rise to the level of deserving engagement on its own anti-imperialistic This content downloaded from 74. This imperial harmony seems beside Ortiz's point. along with Coronil. as Coronil perceives. he perverts the politics of transculturation by asserting the need for academic collaboration between the United States and Cuba. and protectionism" (lxvi). especially when we observe that his primary examples of transculturation involve the relationship between Europeans (creolized or not) and indigenous Americans or African slaves. which "as in every phase or phenomenon of transculturation. he sensed the critical aspects of Ortiz's work (xlvi-vii). I would argue that his reaction signals that. if nothing else. historian Herminio Portell Vila pointedly notes that hiding behind the "whimsical title" of Contrapunteocubano is nothing less than the condemnation of a neocolonial economy that offers an alliance of transnational capitalists and Cuban elites all the promises of "exploitation. however. neither an unbridgeable cultural gulf nor modernizing political considerations are enough to explain away Malinowski's misreading of Ortiz. Malinowski proposes it as a term whose value is found more in its etymological innovation (lviii) and practical applicability (lxiv) than in its critical thrust. the influences and understanding would be mutual.BARBARIANTHEORIZING | 67 theoretical ambitions" (xxxv). Rather than theorize his positionality and rethink what counts as knowledge in the metropole.32. are unsavory. 4 May 2013 13:59:13 PM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . unfair privilege.

Given that we routinely impose the universal value of the local theorizations of Marx. literary form" (152). Candido's essay that I will juxtapose with Malinowski's reading of Ortiz is specifically an assessment of Brazilian cultural production. it is positive proof of the potential for serious scholarship emerging from the Third World. although his wide-ranging erudition in Latin American letters almost assures that he knew his work. ideas. the change in perspective provided by reading "Cuba" from "Brazil" offers a means for reevaluating Contrapunteo cubano. Rather. such as that provided by Candido. I do not posit a theory from Latin America. Freud. shifting the locus of enunciation from the academic center embodied by Malinowski to the academic periphery and Candido's theorization of the Brazilian essay brings new insights to the value of Ortiz's work. Ortiz through Candido I have found no source in which Candido comments directly upon Ortiz." Candido enunciated what many Brazilians had perhaps already intuited. "God") upon far-flung epistemological communities. At the same time.97 on Sat. the apparent spatial disconnect between Candido and Ortiz should not be terribly abrasive. 4 May 2013 13:59:13 PM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions .).32. In Malinowski's world. Gramsci. This content downloaded from 74.35 However.82. Mignolo's emphasis upon loci of enunciation forces us to be up-front about these issues. for that matter.LUND 68 1 JOSHUA terms. it is not so much the Cuban that speaks to and for the West (as in Mignolo's barbarian theorizing). influences and cultural movements" under the auspices of "great North American institutions of teaching and investigation" (lxiv). albeit without succinct elaboration: "the best expressions of thought and feeling have always assumed. as necessary for the productive engagement with Ortiz. however. in Brazil. He does not propose such a Cuban endeavor in New York or Washington. but rather the North American academy that will swoop in and refine the rough-hewn edges of admirably handled-if a little awkwardly so-received instruments of knowledge (anthropology. "science. In "Literatura e cultura de 1900 a 1945.36At first glance. and Derrida (or. this thesis may strike one as anything from meaningless to pedestrian. Moreover. Malinowski concludes by proposing the establishment-in Cuba-of a "clearing house of information. functionalism." etc. In other words.

Thus literature not only provides the "feeling and national consciousness . however. so social scientists cannot resist the pull of novelistic discourse. He thereby introduces a new total theory of academic hybridity for the production of knowledge in Brazil.BARBARIANTHEORIZING 1 69 Properly contextualized against the hegemonic scientism of the time. then. He is critical because by emphasizing the literary aspects of social science.38 Brushing aside this apparent cul-de-sac that frustrates clean epistemological solutions. Whereas he seems to see instrumental positivism as a total theory whose idealism falls apart in Brazil. at some level.32. Brazil's intellectual expression. 4 May 2013 13:59:13 PM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . In Brazil. of philosophy or art. but also attains. the critical nature of Candido's assessment surfaces: where Eurocentric positive philosophy and science had failed to adequately engage Brazilian society. liberate us from a host of problems. which conspire to commandeer the vacant seat of Cartesian reason as the dominant legitimizing discourse in Brazil. philosophers" (154). it introduces new ones. Candido then turns around and completes the dialectic by asserting that "the powerful magnet of literature interfered with the sociological tendency" (153). In fact. [of] pride and the overcoming of sensed inferiorities" (154). constructed in the confluence of history and economics. a scientific luster that allows Brazil to know and categorize itself through the ethnographic and sociological function appropriated by Brazilian literary discourse. The sociohistorical specificity of Brazil leads Candido to diagnose a social situation that has made virtually impossible the formation of "researchers. in the end asserting yet another form of idealism. through Candido. just as novelists are transformed into sociologists. "giving rise to that mixed genre of essay. technicians. the rhetorical and the subjective. I would assert that Candido's contribution to reading Latin American theory contains elements both perceptive and critical. of course. is historically marked as a distinctively hybrid and interdisciplinary field of knowledge production.97 on Sat..82. literature had. He is perceptive in that he understands the fact that the rules of positive scientism become a litmus test for what counts as scholarship. succeeded. This content downloaded from 74. his move simply overturns a discourse that values the empirical in favor of one that values the literary.37Into this epistemic vacuum rush the literary and the mythical.. which is a truly Brazilian form of investigation" (153). Candido's exceptionalist revindication of Brazilian intellectual production does not.

the work of Ortiz defies the turn toward disciplinary specialization and notions of canonicity. Moreover. What Candido offers us is a modified set of rules. universally objective "space. impenetrable by the "West" as represented in a figure like Malinowski. This content downloaded from 74.97 on Sat.82." then. 153). Latin American) intellectual production emerges. but which challenges the hegemony of instrumental rationality. the scientific and the literary. at some level.70 | JOSHUA LUND he implicitly recognizes the rhetorical nature of all scientific endeavors. I would argue. implying a plurality of (Western) ways of knowing. a way to rethink what counts as knowledge. this difference could imply an extreme kind of exceptionalism. Candido's theory of Brazilian intellectual production as academically hybrid and fundamentally rhetorical readily encompasses the Cuban Ortiz.32. 4 May 2013 13:59:13 PM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions .41 Located somewhere between the inspiration of the muse and the rigor of the scientific method. Now." epistemologically located at the intersection of London. nor some free-floating. Paris. Framed around Ortiz's Contrapunteo cubano. are combined with greater or lesser constitutes the most characteristic and original felicity-[which] of our aspect thought" (Candido. he also understands that the locus of enunciation of the rules of positive scientism is not Brazil. if not all." but rather a local institution of knowledge known as "the West. Like Gilberto Freyre's Casa-grandee senzala (1933) (Candido's quintessential Brazilian example). still placed firmly within a Western genealogy. The Latin American theorists that follow these alternative rules offer us.39sweeping conclusions are drawn from an openly subjective observation and lived experience40 alongside what we might today call an archaeological method of empirical research. The lyrical style of Contrapunteocubano embraces the literary without remorse. Contrapunteo cubano is a product of "that line of essay-in which imagination and observation. Candido's invocation of the national "our. the lucid nature of Candido's assessment of Brazilian (and. the narrative continually shifts from pensive to argumentative in defense of Ortiz's various theses regarding the dialectic between the economic stimulants of cultural change and the cultural stimulants of economic expansion. science and art. of Latin America in his identification of a barbarous theorizing that promiscuously intermingles the subjective and the objective. and New York. could potentially be expanded to include much.

militarily) center. as barbarian theorist.BARBARIANTHEORIZING | 71 Given Ortiz and Candido's "Westernness. it more reasonably implies the need for rethinking standards of epistemological valuation regarding who and what counts as producers of "universal" knowledge. then. By the same token. one implying a dominant center toward which culturally peripheral societies should be progressing. imperial periphery. I would reply that.97 on Sat.42 Ortiz's own locus of enunciation can be understood as a center within a periphery. 4 May 2013 13:59:13 PM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . Caribbean center. Based on my above review." however. politically. one from which he may talk a good cultural exchange game. rather than excuse Eurocentrism by positing ex-centric voices as so exceptional as to be unintelligible. Candido. reading him through Candido implies a real contribution in need of engagement on its own terms. but that in the end only proffers the palliative of "helping" the periphery through the dissemination of neocolonial institutions of higher learning. Malinowksi. An assessment of his own openmindedness and respect for other cultures is not the issue here. It is precisely this status as an ambivalent center (Cuba as colonial center. still operates from a perspective that assumes a civilizing process in which his culture exemplifies the realization of the advanced stage of objective analysis. even though his own work regarding cultural transformation may be regarded as approaching an important level of relativism. Whereas reading Ortiz through Malinowski implies an analytical discourse in need of refinement. Candido can be said to make a move similar to Ortiz's.82.32. American periphery) that lends itself so well to the agency of colonized communities that transculturation theorizes. Operating from a peripheral center. Candido's This content downloaded from 74. While Malinowski's gaze emanates from an ascendant (economically. but also speaks volumes from that reality and forif not the entire world-at least the entire Western academy. What the pluritopic hermeneutics required by colonial semiosis helps us locate-as seen in the above analysis of his introduction-is a gaze that insists upon assessing Ortiz's critical value by the standards of the understanding subject's own culturally specific locus of enunciation. colonial semiosis forces us to engage the positionality of "the other" as embodied by Ortiz and Candido. implies Ortizian-style work as precisely Latin America's potentially great contribution to theory and criticism: a proto-interdisciplinary effort that not only has relevance for a local reality.

problematic) attempts into cultural interventions capable of standing on their own. Mignolo aptly shows how Ribeiro's major works on the civilizing process problematize Norbert Elias's canonical work regarding the same: "whereas Elias focuses on the civilizing process. in the "Eurocentrism. Pluritopic interpretation helps us see how shifting the locus of enunciation from which we theorize Cuba or Brazil's greatest discursive projects can transform them from substandard (inauthentic. which is at the same time the consolidation of (Western) Europe as a world hegemonic power. with the aim of drawing a parallel between these thinkers and Mignolo's exemplary barbarian theorist. Centered in Brazil. Barbarism" section above)." 49. imitative. the aforementioned Brazilian anthropologist Darcy Ribeiro. Ribeiro takes on a decentering function vis-a-vis a central legitimizing discourse of the West-the civilizing process." applied to dominant Western discursive tunnel vision.32. Ortiz provides a distinctly postcolonial corrective by decentering the doctrine of acculturation and its problematic insinuations of assimilation as the hallmark of the cultural transformations fomented by the colonial process. Europe's centrality is relativized (decentered) within a global context. we see how they take on the sometimes polemical task of carving out their own centers from which to enunciate. Similarly. Dussel.72 J JOSHUA LUND perspective leads him to read transculturally the intellectual history of Brazil. THE BARBARIAN RECENTERING I highlight this decentering project. In Ribeiro's view from the margin. The above-mentioned "correctives. Like the authors featured in my own construction. Centered in Cuba.97 on Sat." ("Globalization. cf. They have the capacity This content downloaded from 74. Ribeiro looks at Europe as a recent outcome of human civilizing processes that were preceded by previous hegemonic power[s] and will also be transformed and dissolved. by engaging the peripheral (from one perspective) loci of enunciation of Ortiz and Candido.43 Specifically. Candido thus applies the same corrective decentering to the hegemony of positive scientism and the vexed question of canonicity that Ortiz exerts upon anthropological discourse. 4 May 2013 13:59:13 PM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . are what give their work its Calibanesque flavor.82. Civilization. facilitated by the detailing of Ortiz's and Candido's basic insights.

But it is precisely at this point that we run up against the limits of exceptionalism." While the question of the other has long since been problematized beyond any simple binary reduction.. In Mignolo's schema. and where Mignolo's barbarian theorizing fails to realize the fundamental prescription to interpret pluritopically contained in his colonial semiosis." However. identified from the external perspective of a hegemonic center that marks them as "Cuban. This is in part an important and even necessary project for any intellectual who wants to be "heard." other.. and at the same time was part of the 'other"' (50).44This Hegelian notion of cultural difference. Read through a pluritopic hermeneutics that foregrounds multiple interpretations and relations of power. their Western academic training) from the position of "communities that have been precisely subalternized and placed in the margins" (50). it can be argued that they equally recenter the same discourses to include their own voices. It is this gesture combined with a positionality that obliges them to speak from (geographically and epistemologically) a marginal." 49). border space that makes a theoretician barbarous." "Brazilian.45Thus.97 on Sat. is an assumption that clearly imprisons the discourses of Ortiz and Candido as well. as a point of arrival" ("Globalization...BARBARIANTHEORIZING | 73 to participate in and appropriate the tools of "civilized theorizing" (i. one of the defining features of our three barbarian theorists (along with the distinctly nonbarbarous Malinowski) becomes their reliance upon the discourse of a civilizing process." "peripheral.." 36). Ribeiro-as much as Ortiz or Candido-is identifiable as "someone who was trained as [a Western academic] .32. Mignolo's particular othering of our barbarian theorists is indeed reducible to such a model: they are other when subsumed into their national communities.e. which denies the coeval in favor of an evolutionary model based "in a time frame having the European idea of civilization . when Mignolo asserts that what barbarian theorizing achieves is "the self-appropriation of all the good qualities that This content downloaded from 74. as much as these barbarian theorists decenter dominant discourses. A logical query at this point might lead us to ask in what context we can posit these writers as "other. 4 May 2013 13:59:13 PM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions .82." "ex-centric. a characteristic that Mignolo acknowledges in his own barbarian theorist when he states that "both Elias and Ribeiro are still prisoners of the temporal arrangement of human histories implanted in modernity" ("Globalization.

12). if not reject: the static dichotomy of center and periphery." 46). if the epistemological and ontological aspects of a pluritopic understanding could be dealt with in terms of relativism. however. but also the understandingsubject (Darker. becomes the tension betweencenters. within the Westerngrammar of the civilizing process.82.32. Equally clear.its calling into question of not only the object to be understood. while the aforementioned construction of alternative or expanded centers (movable. Through their assertions of cultural and academic legitimacy. (Darker. overlook[s] the fact that coexistence of perspective does not always take place without a display of power relations and sometimes violence. As I have been arguing here.47our barbarian theorists can only be deemed barbarous through the return to a binary model that a pluritopic hermeneutics would at least problematize. but also the periphery. its ethical dimension invites one to look at the configuration of power. possessors of the accoutrements of knowledge-power both in their own societies and abroad. the real contribution of colonial semiosis is in its pluritopic interpretation that leads us to theorize as "relational and movable" not only the center.. This content downloaded from 74. so-called good qualities that we must include is precisely that which the barbarian theorist is construed as fighting against: the privileges conferred by demarcating a center. but centers from which to civilize. 15) By looking pluritopically at the configuration of power packed into the decentering/recentering impulse of our barbarian theorists (vis-a-vis the discourses of the First World). one of the obvious.. 4 May 2013 13:59:13 PM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . it is worth noting. we can clearly discern the operational center-periphery tension.this is precisely what Ortiz and Candido-like all Western academics46 do: carve out centers from which to enunciate their discourse. In other words.97 on Sat. That the notion of barbarian theorizing only lives up to one-half of this task can be seen through its failure to articulate a truly pluritopic analysis of power. Thus. a political and ethical dimension fundamental to colonial semiosis: The ethical problem arises when the ideal relativism . Given their identification as local intellectuals with global connections. not merely innocent or liberating centers as loci of enunciation. And.74 | JOSHUA LUND were denied to the barbarians" ("Globalization.

Candido. and generally silenced. This history is far too complex to develop here (see above for cursory treatment). they only become barbarous when linked to a semantic of power (the discourse of civilization and barbarism) that implies inferiority based on race.50 And yet the structural and institutional silencing-based on often explicit vast sectors of "barbarous" voices in Latin social categories-of This content downloaded from 74. contingent) on the part of Ortiz.48 Mignolo productively exploits the philological imperative of colonial semiosis by recalling the etymological roots of "text" and its relation to weaving and textiles. A similar treatment with "barbarian. Once a broad term referring to "outsiders" not versed in the dominant language of a particular region." however. social class. does not help the case for a barbarian theorizing when we recall the well-known semantic history behind the word and its intimate etymological relationship to language.49This type of local marginalization is something from which Ortiz. based on the ramifications of their rhetoric-which delineate stages of barbarism (Ortiz).32. gender." 126. our barbarian theorists become equal parts civilizers: heirs to the ciudad letrada made up of the Spanishand Portuguese-speaking elites of their respective societies. however. 8). Seen from this oblique.." especially not within their own societies. or an endgame of recognition in the Western literary canon (Candido)-they forthrightly posit themselves as such. "the barbarian" as deployed in the colonial. is that the criollo and/or mestizo middle. which suggests a much broader semiotic notion of the textual that transcends the limits of alphabetic writing ("Colonial or Postcolonial. Indeed.97 on Sat.BARBARIANTHEORIZING | 75 relational.and upper-classes from which our alleged barbarian theorists emerge were never the object of the term "barbarian. While Spanish and Portuguese may indeed be peripheral languages in terms of today's global division of academic labor. and modernizing projects of Latin America has gone through various permutations but has tended to maintain its connection to and conflation of language and savagery (i. and perhaps most importantly.82.e. Darker. Candido. angle. and Ribeiro are patently exempt. national. The bottom line. 4 May 2013 13:59:13 PM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . and Ribeiro may be considered a radical (barbarous) gesture from the perspective of a colonizing gaze. lack of the outward markers of European "civilization"). this same construction simply reaffirms an already dominant locus of enunciation if gazed upon (pluritopically) from the periphery of the periphery's center.

In other words. with superregionalism only the superregionalist segment of Latin American culture and society achieves what Candido calls interdependency. or at least an important one: the equally slippery line marking the boundaries of internal colonialism. participants in nothing less than the construction of knowledge effected by the Western academy. This problem is clearly spelled out in Alberto Moreiras's critique (1996) of Candido's influential "Literature and Underdevelopment" (1970):51 Only when superregionalism [Latin America's active participation in cultural discourse on a global scale] triumphs in its efforts toward cultural integration does it become immediately clear that superregionalist integration is merely self-integration-and it becomes obvious to what extent this integration is exclusive of so many subaltern. in other words. In other words.52 This. central and peripheral-seems to efface the real border. cultural formations in Latin America. (881. Malinowksi." Several pages ago. That these conversations can yield real creativity and productivity is undoubtable. Thus positioned. either within or alongside.my translation). 4 May 2013 13:59:13 PM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions .97 on Sat.32.82. as I hope to have shown in my treatment of Ortiz. however. the Eurocentric discourses that presuppose a certain privileging of Western knowledge and culture. and Candido. Seen from the perspective of the peripheral and growing numbers of Latin America's culturally and materially marginalized. transnational discussion of cultural influence. from the view of the truly marginalized they are only as barbarous as any other purveyor of Western "civilization. the incessant focus on the slippery frontier between worlds-First and Third. far outpacing the cosmopolitan intellectual who confronts the discrimination imposed by an increasingly English-only international scholarship. brings us back to the symptomatic relationship between exceptionalism and Eurocentrism. In the end. our barbarian theorists become active participants in a privileged. One feature that seems to link all of the Latin American intellectuals engaged here is an implicit desire for inclusion. as Eurocentrism posits itself This content downloaded from 74. I suggested that it was something immanent to the very nature of the recurrent conversation around exceptionalism that foments analytical problematics such as barbarian theorizing.LUND 76 1 JOSHUA America is the urgent problem facing the hemisphere. finally.

political. translation of their works. Several lines of argumentation and analysis constitute this essay. On the other. appear undeniable. he can only legitimize on one level (internationally.BARBARIANTHEORIZING | 77 as the final proof of legitimate knowledge. for those interested in effecting a real disintegration of the various derivations of Eurocentrism. interdependently as it were. As members of social classes that have always had the right to choose in such matters. etc. the benefits of incorporating a multiplicity of voices. this exclusive seat at the table of Western knowledge production is as far as the exceptionalist conversation can take us. however. more urgent border concerning academia: the one between privileged institutional knowledge legitimation (Ortiz. In my assessment. vis-a-vis the "center") the discourses already legitimate (academically speaking) in the periphery.82. once these exmarginal voices are indeed "privileged" (a loaded term. On the one hand.32. Malinowski) and the vast sectors of society that are fenced off from any chance at participating in such a dialogue. 4 May 2013 13:59:13 PM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . publication. the only thing that makes the theorizing of these "barbarians" barbarous is their nationality and their politics. Candido."54 In so doing.). from all the world's various loci of enunciation. or cultural register. a real and important concern of Latin American intellectuals is participation in the construction and/or deconstruction of that knowledge: to participate in the "universal" conversation.97 on Sat. correspondence. With their direct access to local institutions of knowledge and power. travel. this choice is not afforded to those who lack the cultural capital to reject the imposition of barbarism by the elite classes. Thus the incessant scholarly attention directed toward the border between First and Third World misses the real. Ribeiro.53 Thus Mignolo intervenes by creating a privileged figure through the resemantization of the "barbarian. and indirect access to the same at the international level (through multilingualism. usually translatable to This content downloaded from 74. with the end result perhaps revealing little more than an aporia that has dogged many schools of thought-from feminism (see Haraway) to subaltern studies (see Moreiras)-in recent decades. assuming the tag of barbarian is something that they can slip out of as easily as changing their linguistic. not to mention their formation in cosmopolitan schools of thought and privileged sectors of society. however.

could signal quite the opposite. and cultural roots to a discursive foundation of the West. authorial. By reading Latin American(ist) critiques of cultural imperialism through and against each othernot only come to glimpse transculturally and pluritopically-we the workings of their symptomatic. epistemologically sound endeavors. however. sympathetically postcolonial reading. but we also are confronted with their simultaneous and contradictory internalization of Eurocentric discourses.78 | JOSHUA LUND "allowed to be heard" or "introduced into the classroom"). and perhaps even necessary. the strategic essentialism that often arises from such attempts at revindication elides the basic fact that the intellectuals that we claim as representative of their societies' contributions to theories of culture are typically representative of the only sector of their society that could ever dream of such contribution: the most Westernized sector. the troglodyte's "conversion" from barbarous to civilized is purely the effect of the altered gaze of "the other.97 on Sat. at some level. exceptionalism vis-a-vis the Eurocentrisms of the First World.32. Again. 4 May 2013 13:59:13 PM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . This content downloaded from 74. Neither overcome by the civilizing efforts of the imperial explorer nor appropriating the explorer's theoretical tools for his own use. A particular moment marks the transformation of the barbarian-troglodyte into the civilized Homer: his decision to speak to his Western interlocutor. What I hope that this paper does in the context of such problematics is to indicate some more and less successful ways of approaching cultural theories emanating from spaces that tend to be constructed as Third World peripheries. Perhaps the figure of Borges's troglodyte-cum-Homer in "El inmortal" (1949) proves emblematic in this regard. On the other. teasing out the innovations of thinkers such as those analyzed here and then linking those innovations to their emergence from Third World loci of enunciation are perhaps both politically pragmatic and. on the one hand. One reading of the story could find the quintessential barbarian's conversion into Homer indicative of the author's oft-alleged Eurocentrism: the staking of his claim to Argentina's European patrimony by linking his own ontological." The true nature of the barbarian's barbarism is thus revealed as nothing more than the result of the monotopic hermeneutics of the understanding subject.82. they inevitably provoke or are confronted with the status of the exceptional. An alternative.

Juliet Lynd."While I will strive to be vigilant against such dangers. and the Relocation of Languages and Cultures" (1998). and Bradley Nelson. 2." I do so when I want to emphasize that I am not talking about cultural criticism that necessarilyemerges from the geographical space known as "LatinAmerica" or that is articulated by critics that might identify themselves as "LatinAmericans. (1995). Ulf Peter Hallberg. Territoriality. Notes An earlier version of this paper was presented at the interdisciplinary MacArthur Consortium Colloquium.82. "In the Wake of Eurocentrism" (University of Minnesota. and can be attributed only to me. Throughout this paper I will occasionally indulge in tagging the parenthetical suffix "-ist" onto "Latin American. See "Globalization. 1999).32. Especially helpful were the often highly critical readings by Fernando Arenas. the category of barbarism-whether imposed or embraced-can only tell us where he stands in relation to his story's explorer-narrator. and the introduction to The DarkerSide of The Renaisand Colonization sance:Literacy. I realize that this conflation creates the danger of effacing inherent differences between practicing Latin Americanism "here"and "there.97 on Sat. Civilization Processes. Latin American exceptionalism stands in a tense relationship with American exceptionalism.I refer to what Roman de la Campa calls a "transnationaldiscursive community" (1) that contextualizes its scholarly production through the object of study called "LatinAmerica. American This content downloaded from 74." While most of the thinkers that frame this essay are indeed Latin Americans working in Latin America. Latin Americanist cultural criticism indicates a broader professional and interdisciplinary notion of thinking critically about Latin America." I thank John Mowitt and Karen Brown Thompson for their kind invitation. Third World theoretician. 4 May 2013 13:59:13 PM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . Many other individuals were patient enough to read drafts of this paper. See "Colonial and Postcolonial Discourse: Cultural Critique or Academic Colonialism?" (1991)." Rather. 1. A pluritopic hermeneutics would likely lead us to a more nuanced and multiple reading of the contestatory discourses at play in the construction of this one of many possible foundational figures for Latin America: Borges's Homer. 4. especially 1-30). Keya Ganguly. All of the paper's problems or offenses are the result of the good advice that I opted not to follow. a better consideration of their stakes can be found in de la Campa's LatinAmericanism (1999. 3. Malcolm McNee. during the workshop entitled "Eurocentrism in the Americas.BARBARIANTHEORIZING | 79 In the context of a cultural analysis of the troglodyte-Homer. although they differ in important ways. and all of the participants for the productive dialogue and community building that defined the event.

S.Roberto Schwarz. Bolivar implores the first congress of Venezuela to resist the temptation of imposing the political models of North America or Europe upon the sociohistorically specific needs of their nascent republic (84-85). sophisticated reviews of exceptionalism in the U. Nuestra America(1891). See. 1998]. Latin American exceptionalism speaks to the notion of uniqueness (sometimes with the messianism of American exceptionalism. or problematized. whose contributors tend to effect such a critique of exceptionalism).82. Lisa Disch was very generous in bringing Ross's book to my attention and in fleshing out for me many of the nuances of American exceptionalism. labor's general conservatism in the United States). in other words. but also excepted.S. they are too closely tied to ontological questions of identity for my purposes here. Roberto Fernandez Retamar. 6.g. in both identitarian (American difference) and social questions (e. and the subsequent legitimation of these critical tools through their influence in the Westernacademy. Jorge Luis Borges. 5. "El escritor argentino y la tradici6n" (1955). Two good.80 LUND I JOSHUA exceptionalism is a concept with a long and fraught history in the social and human sciences. and American studies.S.32. Latin America.) exceptionalism by implying a feeling or state of exclusion. messianic inflection (the oft-repeated notion of the United States as a unique exemplar of progress and democracy). context include Dorothy Ross's The Origins of AmericanSocialScience(1991) and Larry Gerber's "Shifting Perspectives on American Exceptionalism: Recent Literatureon American Labor Relations and Labor Politics" (1997). 4 May 2013 13:59:13 PM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . surrounded by an especially rich body of work in political philosophy. Jose Marti. as a special. Caliban: Apuntes sobrela culturaen nuestraAmerica (1972). American exceptionalism is typically invoked in its triumphalist. Generations of Latin American intellectuals have offered more or less critical variations on this theme. This line of argumentation continues today in many of the debates surrounding the efficacy of concepts such as the postmodern in Latin America (see Beverly and Oviedo). ethnocultural multiplicity (see the special issue of Cultural Critiqueon "The Futures of American Studies" [Wiegman. but it simultaneously inscribes a negative connotation often absent from American (U. It is also widely problematized as a discursive underpinning for the erasure of U. The Latin American exceptionalism that I introduce here does not draw upon an ample bibliographic genealogy similar to that of American exceptionalism. but usually less forcefully stated). Whether embraced.97 on Sat. for example. "La soledad de America Latina" (Nobel speech) (1982). As I describe below. If by "universal theory" we mean reflexive ways of thinking critically about cultures and societies. and while problems such as "radical alterity" are certainly germane to the topic at hand. "Misplaced Ideas" (1992).Gabriel GarciaMarquez. is not only exceptional.. or as an explanation of American singularity vis-a-vis Europe. rejected. which are more interested in discursive tendencies. American exceptionalism is always at some level attached to the notion of the United States as unique. In his speech at Angostura (1819). labor history. Exceptionalism shares important critical ground with alterity. however.then LatinAmerican exceptionality This content downloaded from 74. exceptional case.

This issue is larger than Latin Americanist criticism.including Malinowski's introducare from the Duke Press edition of CubanCounterpoint (1995). Coronil cites Phyllis Kaberry as noting Ortiz's transculturation in her introduction to the first edition of Malinowski's The Dynamicsof CultureChange..82. But then: "Itis remarkablethat in her introduction to the second edition of Malinowski's book. Thus I speak of exceptionalism discursive tendency or assumption. dependency theory. critical summary of a particularly lively thread of this debate. let us say. 7.'s "Critical Fanonism" (1991).All tion. repeats 10. Her reference to Fernando Ortiz is dropped without explanation.Uma Narayan's Dislocating Cultures(1997. 9. Three key formulations include Edward Said's "Representing the Colonized: Anthropology's Interlocutors" (1989). Silvia Spitta in the Between Waters assertion Two 3). Schwarz theorizes the question through a critique of the obsessive preoccupation with imitation and belatedness ("no Brazilian could have had the idea nor the strength to be.32. and "Nacional por subtracao" (1989). in the opening pages of her influential ImperialEyes: TravelWritingand Transculturation (1992). 33). giving universality to this social form" [23]) in "Misplaced Ideas" (originally published as "As ideias for de lugar" in 1973). (1995. my ironic reference to the "relevant parts of the world" stems from Walter Mignolo's consideration of the links between language. published a decade and a half later. the Kant of favour. The bibliography regarding this topic is extensive. ongoing discussion regarding both academic knowledge produced in the Third World and the position imposed upon (and/or assumed by) the ambiguously defined "ThirdWorld academic" working in the Western academy.97 on Sat. At least Mary Louise Pratt recognizes Ortiz. "the First World") that produce "scholarship"(see "Globalization. and my treatment of it is informed by a general. even in a work his to footnote status is curious though relegation premised on his This content downloaded from 74. and together with it the reference to Malinowski's article in which he had used Ortiz's transculturation" (xxxvii). and Henry Louis Gates Jr. Rama relies upon Ralph Beals as the source on Malinowski's forgetting and/or abandonment of transculturation (Transculturaci6n. I should thank Hernan Vidal for pushing me to make this distinction. 1978 edition. of Contrapunteo. and imperialism. which provides a good.e. or magical realism are only three obvious examples of influential intellectual contributions that owe their provenance to Latin America and yet have as a successfully traveled outside of the region. 8. as opposed to exceptionality as a clearly identifiable state. 4 May 2013 13:59:13 PM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . academia. All citations of Contrapunteo cubano. Perhaps the most successful literary thematization of this problem can be found in Garcia Marquez's Cien afios de soledad(1967) and the poignant treatment of Jose Arcadio Buendia's many frustrated attempts to participate in the universal creation of knowledge through his tardy scientific discoveries. 121-57).BARBARIANTHEORIZING | 81 as an accurate category would be unsustainable."35-43). Liberationtheology. Finally. she modified this section. which statistically detail Pletsch's thesis regarding the extremely limited regions of the world (i. University citations have been cross-referenced for accuracy using the Ayacucho.

"La soledad de America Latina".ix)."see Dussel's Invention. yes. 4 May 2013 13:59:13 PM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . 15. 14. it would be misleading to assume.. the accuracy of this insinuation. The original title was Civilizacion VidadeJuanFacundo y barbarie: Quiroga y de la RepiblicaArgentina (Gonzalez Echevarria.32. One of his stated goals. More predictable is my empirical observation that nearly every time I mention transculturation in a North American institutional context.133-35. Mignolo states his own exceptionalist preoccupations obliquely. and have no intention of weighing in on. and unfortunately I was thus unable to incorporate it in any kind of thorough fashion. 98).97 on Sat. that postcolonial theories could only emerge from the legacies of the British Empire or be postulated as monological and theoretical models to describe the particularities and diversity of colonial experiences. but rather as a sort of confirmation that just as the exceptionalist angst cannot be reduced to First World intentionality. English) are the ones with scientific legitimacy" (Darker. has been cited as a key aim of postcolonial theory to date (Ashcroft. Mignolo has some convincing things to say on the topic. my interlocutor invariably responds with some version of "oh. 37). For an early formulation of world-systems theory. For a summary of the historical production of the concept "Europe. LocalHistories/Global Designs (2000). aspecto ffsico.German. which."3). "Nacional por subtracao. Dussel cites Hegel as offering the clearest articulation of this move ("Beyond Eurocentrism. languages in the modern period (see Darker 13. Schwarz."See the introduction to Mignolo's LocalHistories/Global Designs." This comment is not meant as a criticism of Pratt's methods (academic work would be even more cumbersome if we all developed our concepts from their primary source) or her success. Eurocentrism. Beyond the nineteenth-century debates regarding everything from the This content downloaded from 74. a project that I would classify as invoking Latin America's exceptionalism vis-a-vis postcolonial criticism.and explanatory insufficiency. also. yet unmistakably: "It would be misleading to assume . The deconstruction of the center/periphery model as a tool for comprehending cultural influence. See "BeyondEurocentrism:The World-System and the Limits of Modernity" (1998) and TheInventionof theAmericas(1995). I have not researched. Mignolo increasingly adopts the work of Dussel in his most recent book. 18. paradoxically. that only the theoretical legacies of the languages of modernity (French. see Wallerstein's The ModernWorld System(1974). like in Pratt. on the basis of its totalizing thrust. neither is it reducible to Third World paranoia.82. is to "reinscribe"the languages and discourses of Latin America into the on going dialogue surrounding the postcolonial. See Garcia Marquez. Models of center/periphery tend to run into problems when confronting the reality of "peripheral"cultures located within the "center." 12.LUND 82 | JOSHUA terminology. one might intuit as its natural domain of critique. that work was released during the final revisions of this essay. 17.costumbres y hdbitos 19. 16. Incidentally. 11.. then. in terms of the shifting authority of and "Globalization").

Peter Hulme. gives the "indigenous tradition" in TheDarkerSideof theRenaissance While the spaces opened up by colonial semiosis are invigorating. see Ella Shohat and Robert Stam's "polycentric multiculturalism" in Unthinking Eurocentrism(1994).etc.11-16). the discourse of civilization and barbarism has a multiplicity of nuances that far transcend a simple urban/rural dichotomy. is one of several critics who have pointed out the curiously "cursory attention" that Mignolo (Hulme. citizenship." 126).. Columbus declaring that he will bring to Castilia a half-dozen Taino captives "so that they may learn to speak") and forward to contemporary debates surrounding indigenous rights and land reform. Cf. 22. a pioneer in the formulation of colonial discourse. (1991).97 on Sat.g.82. the grammar of civilization and barbarism can be traced back to the originary moments of the conquest (e.BARBARIANTHEORIZING 1 83 purging of the South American pampa of its indigenous inhabitants to perceived crises of linguistic purity (Bello. a "network of processes" (128). 20. Theoretical relations of center/periphery always fail as real-life reflections of a global reality. been plugged into the discourse. the impetus behind a set of questions (126). is proposed as an improvement upon "colonial discourse. I am of course speaking in extremely broad strokes here. who negatively theorizes this process as a tendency toward belatedness and superficiality ("Nacional por substracao"). and he alternatively refers to it as a "field of study" ("Colonial and Postcolonial. Schwarz." transcending the focus on alphabetic writing that dominates the latter (see "Colonial and Postcolonial"). Rama addresses the tension between the local and the national through the cultural field in Transculturacidn and Laciudadletrada(1984). For parallel endeavors. at various moments.Cyborgs. the border as epistemological space for critique has a tradition in Latin America too extensive to document here. gender. Mignolo himself has tended to focus upon what could more accurately be called (Eurocentric) "discourse. 1850). 24. 4 May 2013 13:59:13 PM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions .. with its turn toward a plurality of sign-systems. 223). Indeed. and a "dialectic" (129). 25. ethnicity. social class. nation. in his new book. literacy. 21. Colonial semiosis. Mignolo extensively develops his notions of "border thinking" and "border gnosis. including his well-known Caliban. Issues of race."with indigenous semiotic difference serving as the occasional philological counterpoint. From Borges's orillas to Anzaldua's borderlands. Meanwhile.Barbariantheorizing contributes to the current interdisciplinary enthusiasm for border studies and related notions of liminality." It is difficult to This content downloaded from 74. have all. human rights.32. Mignolo develops the "pluritopic hermeneutics" that grounds the interpretative character of colonial semiosis from the work of Raimundo Pannikar (Darker. and Donna Haraway's and Women notion of situated knowledges in Simians. Mignolo does not always clarify precisely what colonial semiosis is.Fernandez Retamardiscusses the ramifications of "civilization and barbarism"in various sources. poverty. The best summary of colonial semiosis in Mignolo's own words is found in LocalHistories/Global Designs (14-16). 23. language.

unbroken process of transculturation of human groups. Both Spitta and de la Campa note the problematic relationship between transculturation and feminism. with Spitta developing the insight slightly (neither. 26. Negative because they imply Latin American intellectual and cultural production as marginalized or unrecognized in the "universal"creation of knowledge. all in a state of transition"(103. 28.Thatother scholars are guilty of this elision of power in the subsequent development of transculturation is more sustainable (see Sergio Luiz Prado Bellei's "Brazilian Anthropophagy Revisited" [1998]). in fact. in which each half of the equation goes through gain. the three seem to conflate (see LocalHistories.32. For example. but one could do worse than start with Julio Le Riverend's "Ortiz y sus contrapunteos" (1978). "[Cuba's social history] is an intense. Positive in that they both use Eurocentric. as exemplified in works like Helio Oiticica's manifesto "Tropicalia"(1968) and Nelson Pereira dos Santos's film Como era gostoso o meu frances (1971). 30. 29. As Coronil notes. xxxi-iv). and Judith Butler (LatinAmericanism. Both the modernist and tropicalist interventions in Brazil-though distinct in their political thrust (see Arantes. The spirit of "acculturation" was an attempt to explain the cultural change in colonial situations as experienced by both colonizing and colonized culture. While the border between literary and anthropological (especially This content downloaded from 74. Transculturationis introduced as a dialectical process.308).97 on Sat. Homi Bhabha. and gives a good general overview of the Latin American(ist) evolution of transculturation in the introduction of her book. Ortiz's transculturation had a critically historicizing edge that recognized conflict. The bibliography in Spanish is too vast to review here. The best recent treatment of Contrapunteo cubanoin English is Coronil's introduction to the Duke University Press edition. The critique that Ortiz elides questions of power (see Spitta) seems to me a misreading of his work (see Coronil). was a direct movement spearheaded by Oswald de Andrade and reworking of the antropofagia his Manifestoantropdfago (1928) during the Brazilian modernism of the 1920s and 1930s. and eventually the production of new and original cultural forms (102-3). What Ortiz perceptively notes is that its practical usage consistently honored the English etymology of "acquiring"culture. my emphasis). it is well known that the use of an aesthetics of antropofagia that reemerged during the Tropicdlia movement of the 1960s and 1970s. 31-40)-rehearse the dialectic of exceptionalism and Eurocentrism and would provide a productive field for the analysis that I propose here.82. specifically on the part of the colonized group. loss. De la Campa reviews Ortiz in the light of contemporary theorists such as Rama.LUND 84 | JOSHUA tease out the difference between these concepts and "barbariantheorizing. take it very far). 32. 57-84). Nestor Garcia Canclini.misplaced ideas as a sounding board for their own critical interventions. 27. however. Spitta discusses Ortiz at some length. 31. 4 May 2013 13:59:13 PM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions ." and. complex. in contrast with Malinowski's more taxonomic concerns (see Coronil.

a project that I doubt he would embrace.32. 36. It should be emphasized that Candido is specifically seeking a schema for assessing past Brazilian intellectual production and is not offering prescriptions as to how contemporary scholarship shouldbe carried out. anachronistically placing him in a discursive flow toward postmodern antidisciplinary textuality. "Sugar comes into the world without a last name. 33. While his own professional biography passes through a number of disciplines (Becker. All translations of "Literaturae cultura" are mine. 4 May 2013 13:59:13 PM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . I do not want to characterize Candido as making a pointed attack upon disciplinary boundaries. While the aesthetics of such comparisons are appealing. I would propose more interregional comparison between Cuba and Brazil. however.where he asserts that the Brazilian northeast "might be taken simply as another Caribbean island" (1992. In other words. by following Benitez-Rojo and discarding relatively arbitrarygeopolitical or linguistic zones in favor of more fluid standards of cultural traits and material histories. 35. especially considering Antonio Benitez-Rojo'sradical amplification of the Caribbean (Laisla quese repite[1989]). Throughout Candido's writings dealt with here. This is not. Literary references seem to outnumber scholarly and range from the opening invocation of the Librode buenamorto Jose Marti. including the original (Coronil). as opposed to one dominated by polarized metanarratives (xii). 72). and do not mean to essentialize the vast sociocultural differences between Cuba and Brazil. as a figure like Peruvian novelist-anthropologist Jos6 Maria Arguedas exemplifies. It is also important to recognize that Candido does not offer an assessment of the "Brazilian character. from Francisco de Quevedo to George Sand. At the same time. xvii). What Coronil wants to emphasize here is not that transculturation ever went away. 39. If anything. but that its critique seems more relevant to a decentering world. 34.82.97 on Sat. a question whose ramifications I have seriously attempted to disentangle. terms such as "philosopher" or "literature" are generally meant in their Eurocentric sense. I would say that the border between literature and anthropology has alwaysbeen far more openly ambiguous in Latin America. I realize that I am treading on thin ice.BARBARIANTHEORIZING | 85 ethnographic) production has been under assault in the North American academy for some time." but speaks more specifically about social conditions averse to the establishment in Brazil of institutions of Western science. like a slave" (42) is a typical opening phrase of a chapter section. I think that much fruitful comparative work between these two countries remains to be done. 37. this may be more than anything an effect of the particular letradoacademic tradition that differentiates Latin American from North American academia. It appears in all other editions. See Spitta for a limited introduction to transculturation's genealogy. 38. and left largely unproblematized. This content downloaded from 74. Portell Vila's prologue is mysteriously absent from the Ayacucho edition of Contrapunteo (1978).

See O processo civilizatorio Processo (1968) and As Americase a civilizacao: deformaqao e causasdo desenvolvimento (1970).32. as Candido shows. and activist for the marginalized is not in any way to be downplayed by my commennarrativa for an analysis of Ribeiro's extraorditary. Of This content downloaded from 74. creative thinkers in other parts of the world seem to carry out a similar practice. 43." to a "state of advanced barbarism. trans. Issues such as the implications of his remarkableDiary in the StrictSenseof the Term (1967) could obviously provide assessments of his legacy contradictory to those put forth here.82. 45. novelist. whether criolloor mestizo" (Invention. through Edmundo O'Gorman. the amazing contrasts I have observed in the two agricultural products on which the economic history of Cuba rests" (3). Likewise. [However. The Malinowski that I am dealing with throughout this paper is understood exclusively via his introduction to Ortiz's Contrapunteo. Clearly.] occidentalculture [what I am calling "Western"] could encompass Latin America or at least its elites. I want to emphasize that he appears here only as a rhetoricalfigure invoked by Mignolo. See Rama's Transculturacidn narily collaborative anthropological work in Brazil. For a more nuanced reading of Malinowski in terms of transculturation. Candido's assessment of Latin American cultural production posits a course of development that. 4 May 2013 13:59:13 PM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . desigualdos povosamericanos 44. and the fully civilized Europeans (99-100). and I do not prehim in tend to provide a fair hearing the context of his life's work. It should be emphasized that it is not simply the exploitation of literary tropes that characterizes these essays.134). notes: "The North American ideological notion of the occidental hemisphere nevertheless excludes the South-namely. An unfortunate side effect of my rhetoric is that so much superficial attention is drawn to Ribeiro. 41. whose barbariantheorizing is the actual object of critique. 42. Ortiz sees the social history of Cuba as an intermingling of distinct human groups at different stages of development: the "paleolithicculture" of the Ciboneys. senator. my emphasis). who. the neolithic Tainos." to "intermediate cultures between the Taino and the Aztec. Africa and Latin America-which geographically pertain to that hemisphere . Ribeirolike all of the writers engaged here-is a truly remarkable individual. while maintaining its specificity. In labeling all of the thinkers here "Western. 46..86 | JOSHUA LUND 40. with metals. but their insistent disintegration of the border between subjective and objective analysis. see Coronil. whose actual work is not in any way at issue in this essay. it is problematic to crown Latin America as the exclusive site of this practice. in drab prose. but as yet without writing" (101. champion of the left. "[A]1lI can do is set down. poet. imported African cultures range from the "primitive."I am following Dussel. While.. whose work as an anthropologist. Becker). the form fulfilled a certain expressive lacuna in Latin American cultural production.97 on Sat. can only reach its full potential when "interdependent"with European production: "the majority of our countries [sic] large masses [are] immersed in a folkloric stage of oral communication" ("Literature and Underdevelopment" 123.

and I feel that the question is to some extent folded into my critique of exceptionalism. our own not least" (225). Indeed. especially when thinking about issues of race. 49. regarding imitation and authenticity in "Nacional por subtracao" (1986): "Through its logic.82. Ortiz's Contrapunteo cubanowas translated into English within a decade of its publication. as with any academic positioned in a Western (epistemologically speaking) university. when the decisive point is in the segregation of the poor.. however. even though I do This content downloaded from 74. literacy. Moreiras's critique echoes a similar commentary by Schwarz. etc. Local political power struggles that may entail attempted marginalization (Ribeiro's exile during the 1960s." "Literatureand Underdevelopment" is a panoramic consideration of the interplay between literature and society. I do not choose to do so here. excluded from the universal. 52. Ortiz's early lack of institutional support) are not at issue here. 47. Candido has been a prominent intellectual on the Brazilian scene since at least the 1950s (see Becker)." In other words.5-6). and of cultural alterity. the area of analysis is expanded to greater Latin America.97 on Sat. To question the barbarismof Latin American intellectuals working in Latin America is not to erase the problematic power dynamics contained within the question of whereone practices Latin Americanism (see de la Campa. and would shift depending upon regional politics: immigration status. since it concentrates on the relation between elite and copy. What I am highlighting is their eventual incorporation into the academic establishment. the production of "works of a mature and original tone. The "interdependency" that Candido delineates refers to the mutual cultural influence between center and periphery. 53. especially 1-30). I am partly inspired by Said's call "to see Others not as ontologically given but as historically constituted . on the one hand. to "try to distinguish more sharply between the notions of cultural resistance [or critique]. following Gates. on the other" (466). [and thus] erode the exclusivist biases we so often ascribe to cultures. in this case. which will slowly be assimilated by other peoples. the debate [around imitation] hides the essential.BARBARIANTHEORIZING 1 87 course..32. am of course a victim of this same desire. but has also held high-ranking posts in Brazilian governmental institutions. 4 May 2013 13:59:13 PM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . ethnicity. what is meant by the Westernness of Latin American intellectuals is a problem that we could pursue and complicate to great lengths. I. but rather to complicate it. I do not intend to efface Latin American difference. contemporary culture" (47. sexuality. my translation). Ribeiro has not only had several of his works widely translated. 50. and community. Like "Literaturae cultura de 1900 a 1945. An example that he draws upon is Rub6n Dario's poetic influence in Spain (131). 48. I am of course not rejecting any place for Said's notion of "constitutive otherness. and he received attention from influential figures such as LeviStrauss (Barnet. as I hope my dual reading of Ortiz has demonstrated. The list could be continued to great lengths. including those of the metropolitan and imperialist countries" (133). 51.

ica. "BrazilianAnthropophagy Revisited. Paulo Eduardo." In Cannibalismand the ColonialWorld.Borges provides an exceptionally powerful resemantization of the barbarianin "El inmortal" (1949). Sergio Luiz Prado. then. Rio de segundoAnt6nioCdndio Janeiro:Paz e Terra. 1998. like so many European attempts to reach a center located in India. Bellei. 1998. Jorge Luis. del tabacoy el azucar.Antonio. Key Conceptsin PostColonialStudies. John. Tenerife:Instituto de Linguistica Andres Bello. in and of itself. 1981. "El escritor argentino y la tradici6n. but not a new one.ed. Mignolo is one of many who see new promise for the decentering of the West through globalization (see "Globalization"). Reprint. Reprint. Rufino Blanco-Fombona. 1992. perhaps today's critical voyages have no choice but to travel via a center epistemologically located in "Europe. Princeton: Princeton University Press. Bolivar. James Perspcective. 4 May 2013 13:59:13 PM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . Gramdtica canos. carries out a similar strategy of reversal in NuestraAmerica."Hopefully creative thinking. TheRepeating Trans. Borges. "ManifestoAntrop6fago. and eds. Becker. Ram6n Trujillo."El inmortal.Peter Hulme. The Postmodernism Debate in LatinAmerOviedo. for example. An often effective move. Sentimentoda dialeticana experienciaintelectual brasileira: Dialeticae dualidade e Roberto Schwarz. Howard.San Barnet. but rather about it. 54. an image with which I close the essay. and Margaret Iversen. Andr6s. Oswald de. N. 1992."In El pensamiento vivo de Bolivar. Works Cited Andrade.Ed. Island:TheCaribbean and thePostmodern Benitez-Rojo. 6: 11-19. ed.C. Francis Barker. Rio de Janeiro:Civilizacao Brasileira.82. Reprint. 87-109. "Discurso pronunciado por el Libertadorante el Congreso de Angostura el 15 de febrero de 1819. and not the attempt. in Discusidn. Jose Marti. Durham. It should go without saying at this point that the object of my intervention is the exceptionalist construction of the barbarian theorist. This content downloaded from 74. Arantes." 1928. University Press. will effect the unseating of this center. Antonio Candido:On Literatureand Society. 1955. in El aleph.Buenos Aires: Editorial Losada.London: Routledge.Madrid:Alianza. by Latin American intellectuals to reach the widest audience possible. Maraniss. 1994." Reprint. . N.C. and Helen Tiffin. 1942. de la lengua castellanadestinadaal uso de los ameriBello. Gareth Griffiths.32.97 on Sat. 1971. 1850.: Duke Durham. in Obrascompletas. 1995.LUND 88 | JOSHUA not write fromLatin America. Miguel. 1995. Bill. and not an accident equivalent to the "discovery" of a New World. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. 1976.Madrid:Alianza. Jose Beverly. If Dussel's world-system model still holds. FernandoOrtiz y el Contrapunteo Jose:University de Costa Rica.1970.: Duke University Press." 1949. Ashcroft.Sim6n.

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