In África, o berço da modernidade: por uma visão pós-colonial da modernidade e do território. In Territórios, cidades e identidades africanas em movimento, the author starts by taking a brief look at what is conventionally called modernity and what constitutes the substratum on which the “West” anchors itself for a triumphant and universalist autonarrative. Various authors, mainly from the mid-eighties onwards, have sought to demystify the origins of Western civilisation and modernity, most notably the three volumes of Black Athena: The Afroasiatic Roots of Classical Civilization (1987/1991/2006), by Martin Gardiner Bernal.2 Other authors have followed in Bernal’s footsteps to some extent, one of them being the philosopher and historian Enrique Dussel with his work Política de La Liberación: Historia Mundial y Crítica [Liberation Policy: World History and Critique] (2007): World History and Critique] (2007), in which, situated in the field of postcolonial theory, he argues that Hellenocentrism is the father of Eurocentrism and that, given that the so-called “Greek miracle” by the German Romantics of the eighteenth century does not exist, this means having to start “anew” the history of political philosophy. To this end, he considers it essential to redefine the beginning of modernity. It is worth pointing out that it is “postmodernity” – called the historical period that seeks to overcome, or surpasses, modernity – that will give rise, in Western academia and its satellites, not only to a debate about the “postmodern condition” – or about its being the “cultural logic of late capitalism” – but also about the “vision” of modernity itself. Although many prefer expressions other than “postmodern”, or change their preference -such as Zygmunt Bauman, who starts talking about “liquid modernity”, or Gilles Lipovetsky, who prefers the term “hypermodernity”, or others who talk about “incomplete modernity”, or “late modernity” or “alternative modernities”-, in essence they do not put the emphasis on a critical analysis of the hegemonic Anglo-Saxon periodisation of modernity.
Barros-Varela, O. (2022). África, o berço da modernidade: por uma visão pós-colonial da modernidade e do território. In Territórios, cidades e identidades africanas em movimento. Andréia Moassab, Marina Berthet (Orgs.), 11-31. Foz do Iguaçu: EDUNILA, 2022. ISBN: 978-65-86342-32-1