The colonizer and the colonized; master-slave dialectic

(While contemplating the complexities of modern racial interaction,  I recalled two books I had “tweeted” about some months ago on another website.  I thought I’d share the following quotes with you.)

The Colonizer and the Colonized

“The colonialist’s existence is so closely aligned with that of the colonized that he will never be able to overcome the argument which states that misfortune is good for something. With all his power he must disown the colonized while their existence is indispensable to his own. Having chosen to maintain the colonial system, he must contribute more vigor to its defense than would· have been needed to dissolve it completely. Having become aware of the unjust relationship which ties him to the colonized, he must continually attempt to absolve himself…” (emphasis added) — Albert Memmi, The Colonizer and the Colonized, p.98  (Google link:

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Master-Slave Dialectic: Lordship and Bondage (Hegel’s Phenomenology of Spirit)

slavery master slave dialectic icmwp

The master–slave dialectic is the common name for a famous passage of Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel’s Phenomenology of Spirit, though the original German phrase, Herrschaft und Knechtschaft, is more properly translated as Lordship and BondageIt is widely considered a key element in Hegel’s philosophical system, and has heavily influenced many subsequent philosophers.

The passage describes, in narrative form, the development of self-consciousness as such in an encounter between what are thereby (i.e., emerging only from this encounter) two distinct, self-conscious beings. The essence of the dialectic is the movement or motion of recognizing, in which the two self-consciousnesses are constituted in being each recognized as self-conscious by the other. This movement, inexorably taken to its extreme, takes the form of a “struggle to the death” in which one masters the other, only to find that such lordship makes the very recognition he had sought impossible, since the bondsman, in this state, is not free to offer it. – Wikipedia

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hegel pheomenology of spirit

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