SAAP 2016

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Zapatismo, Luis Villoro, and American Pragmatism on Democracy, Power, and Injustice

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This paper provides new evidence that the ideas and practices in the South support, complement, and may even improve some of the Classical Pragmatist’s insights on how we should do philosophy and approach concrete social-political problems. First, it introduces the philosophy of Luis Villoro (1922-2014) and his close relation with the Zapatista movement in Mexico. Second, it demonstrates the striking affinities of this philosopher and the Zapatistas’ practices with some of the best ideas found in John Dewey and Jane Addams. Third, it argues that there is much that Pragmatists today can learn from the further study of this important but neglected Mexican philosopher in the United States. Villoros’ reflections on power, experiences of injustice, revolutions, the dynamics of power and domination are an excellent “American” resource to sharpen the critical and political teeth of Pragmatism.


Gregory Pappas    
Texas A & M University
United States


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