Mamdani introduces this Kitabkhana on Siba Grovogui's book Beyond Eurocentrism and Anarchy, which is presented for a broader discussion on the tenth anniversary of its publication. Grovogui presents a theoretical critique of IR theory, underlined by the assumption that contrasts “Europe alone as a site of reason” with “other cultures as violent,” thus setting up “Europe as a trustee” of human civilization. The darker side of European modernity, Grovogui argues, is the tendency to ignore the subjectivity of the rest; this “absence of critical comparative studies sustains Eurocentrism.” Against this backdrop, Grovogui presents decolonization as a confrontation with historicism. Grovogui's larger point is that the neglect of non-Western traditions hinders the capacity of theorists to envision different futures. To correct this bias, he presents the thought of three African activist scholars at a time when the French Republic had collapsed under the Nazi assault and the African colonized elite was in revolt, intellectually and politically. Mahmood's introduction is followed by an assessment of the Grovogui's book by a number of scholars.
Mahmood Mamdani; Introduction: A Critique of Eurocentrism: Then and Now. Comparative Studies of South Asia, Africa and the Middle East 1 May 2016; 36 (1): 174–177. doi: https://doi.org/10.1215/1089201x-3482195
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