Epistemological Colonialism: from Humboldt to the present (and back again)
Keynote Lecture of the Conference “Alexander von Humboldt: Circulation of State-Knowledge in Europe and Latin America”
Jorge Cañizares Esguerra
It is true that Humboldt, in footnotes, widely acknowledged his many intellectual debts to individuals; but this ritual of public accounting in print obfuscates deeper debts to intellectual genealogies masked in his diaries-archives. This talk explores the ways in which Humboldt deliberately sought to obfuscate his many debts to intellectual traditions in Spain and Spanish America, not just individuals. Jorge Cañizares Esguerra (University of Texas, Austin) will discuss a few examples of Humboldt’s unacknowledged reliance on traditions of Spanish reformism in his treatises on the history of geography and the political economy of Mexico and Cuba, among others. This tradition of obfuscation mutated soon into ignorance. Biographies of Humboldt today are built on this ignorance.
© SMB / Jürgen Liepe; Wikimedia
Termin und Ort
19.00 h, Keynote Lecture
Englisch / English