Notes on Systemic Post-Colonial Sociology of Latin America


The proximity between the epistemological and ontological assumptions in Niklas Luhmann’s social theory and post-colonial approaches have been highlighted and developed throughout the last decade. However, serious doubts were raised on the possibility that Luhmann’s theory of society could be disconnnected from his Eurocentric point of view. This study proposes, in general terms, a path to overcome such a deadlock in systemic theory. The example posed by the case of Latin America case should be taken into account to, initially, distance Luhmann’s theory from its Eurocentric perspective with regard to world society, and later, to correct his narrative of functional differentiation as a resulting phenomenon from transformation processes and social evolution which are internal to Europe. This correction consists of considering hierarchical and supranational structures of colonialism to be constitutive parts of the formation process of a functionally differentiated world society.

modernity; coloniality; world society; functional differentiation; Latin America

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