Decolonizing International Relations: Perspectives from Latin America

Authors Organisations
Type Article
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)386-400
Number of pages15
JournalInternational Studies Review
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2012
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This article joins a growing chorus of voices aiming to decolonize International Relations. It argues that the location of Latin America is ideally placed to bring a significant critique of IR because of its intimate relationship to one of conventional IR’s key protagonists: the USA. The analysis involves thinking about the USA from a historical and theoretical position in Latin America, exploring the always intimate relationship between the two. It draws its inspiration particularly from Latin American theorization of the ‘coloniality of power’, and explores two decolonial strategies: thinking about the emergence of a globally powerful USA through coloniality theorizing; and examining the political possibilities of ‘border thinking’ and ‘diversality’ within the ‘colonial difference’ for a decolonial IR. The article seeks to open a field of discussion which positions Latin America as a site for critical thinking and action, and a heartland of decolonial struggle.


  • Latin America, international relations theory, decolonial struggle, epistemology