Campus Neues Palais
building 2, room 1.10
University of Potsdam
Am Neuen Palais 10
Edouard Glissant’s Politics of Relation and the Imagination of the World-Community
The Martinican poet, novelist, and theorist Edouard Glissant (1928-2011) is commonly considered to be among the most important postcolonial Francophone writers in the fields of Literary Studies, Cultural Studies, and Philosophy. Rooted in the specificity of Martinique and the creole realities of the Caribbean archipelago, Glissant’s theory of relation endorses the type of non-totalitarian universalism endorsed by the notion of micro-cosmopolitanisms. Underlying Glissant’s literary work – including a comprehensive oeuvre of essays, novels, and poetry – is a concern with the development a ‘politics of relation’ that is informed by a poetics of the world and an awareness of its radical diversity. Since the theoretical potentials of his conception of the political have not yet been explored in my view, the central interest guiding my thesis asks how Glissant’s conception of the political can be theoretically defined. At a historic juncture where the global political field is perceived as increasingly contingent and the aptitude of established political theories is being critically re-evaluated from postcolonial and decolonial perspectives, Glissant’s political thought offers a new conceptual and normative framework from the Global South that opens up an imaginative space for new political positionalities and communities.
Moses März completed a Master’s degree in Political Science at the Free University Berlin (FU) in 2012. He then moved to Cape Town where he began the research for his PhD thesis on Edouard Glissant at the African Studies Department of the University of Cape Town (UCT). He completed his PhD dissertation in June 2020 as part of the Research Training Group Minor Cosmopolitanisms and is currently teaching at the Department for English and American Studies at the University of Potsdam. He is a senior editor for the Pan-African literary magazine Chimurenga Chronic and co-founder of the literary magazine Mittel und Zweck.
- Imagining a Politics of Relation: Glissant's Border Thought and the German Border (2019). Tydskrif Vir Letterkunde 56 (1), https://journals.assaf.org.za/index.php/tvl/article/view/6271.
- On Circulations and the African Imagination of a Borderless World (2018), Cartography Editor, special issue of the Chimurenga Chronic, as part of the Manifesta 14 Biennale in Palermo, https://chimurengachronic.co.za/on-circulations-and-the-african-imagination-of-a-borderless-world/.
- The Martyrdom of Mayor Orlando (2018). Chimurenga Chronic, pp. 19-24, http://chimurengachronic.co.za/the-martyrdom-of-mayor-orlando/.
- Berlin-Kapstadt (2018), Editor, inaugural issue of Mittel und Zweck, published as outreach project of the RTG Minor Cosmopolitanisms, www.mittelundzweck.de.
- A Brief History of Fufu Pounding (2017). Chimurenga Chronic, p. 3., http://chimurengachronic.co.za/a-brief-history-of-fufu-pounding/.
- 'Who Killed Kabila I' (2017), Cartography Editor, exhibition catalogue as part of Cosmopolis #1 by the Centre Pompidou in Paris, https://chimurengachronic.co.za/book_series/the-chronic-who-killed-kabila-now-out/.
- Your Own Hand Sold You: Voluntary Servitude in the Francafrique (2017). Chimurenga Chronic, pp. 4-7, http://chimurengachronic.co.za/your-own-hand-sold-you-voluntary-servitude-in-the-francafrique/.
- Chimurenga Chronic (Editor) (2016), second German Chronic publication, published as part of the magazine of the Kulturstiftung des Bundes, https://chimurengachronic.co.za/.
- Salut Glissant (2016) (with Graeme Arendse) Chimurenga Chronic 8. pp. 52-55, https://chimurengachronic.co.za/salut-glissant/.
- The Invention of African Football (2016). Chimurenga Chronic 7 (books Supplement) pp. 18 - 20, https://chimurengachronic.co.za/the-invention-of-african-football/.
- Four Days in June (2016). Chimurenga Chronic 7. pp. 18-21, https://chimurengachronic.co.za/four-days-in-june-2/.
- The Institute (2015). Chimurenga Chronic 6. pp. 35-39. https://chimurengachronic.co.za/the-institute/.
- Zeitung und Raum. Medientagebuch: Chimurenga Chronic (2012). In Der Freitag, 27/04/2012, https://www.freitag.de/autoren/der-freitag/zeitung-und-raum.
- Embracing Opacity. Interview with Ntone Edjabe (Chimurenga Magazine). (2011) AfricAvenir e.V., https://www.africavenir.org/nc/news-details/article/embracing-opacity-interview-with-ntone-edjabe-chimurenga-magazine.html.
- Vordenker der Dekolonialisierung: Achille Mbembe. (2011) In Der Freitag, 14/05/2011, https://www.freitag.de/autoren/der-freitag/vordenker-der-dekolonisierung.