You can now register for the 2018 edition of the Decolonial Summer School!   SSlogo zonder schaduw

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Impressions from the decolonial summer course 2014

In 2010 the decolonial summercourse Middelburg was hosted for the first time at the University College Roosevelt (University of Utrecht) in cooperation with the Centre for Global Studies and the Humanities (Duke University). Opening the university to life’s diversity and other knowledges, Walter Mignolo and Rolando Vázquez have been bringing together students, activists, scholars and artists in the academic setting. Addressing the danger of the single story in the Modern/Colonial world order, the course invites to learn about the decolonial option. Participants and lecturers collectively explore creative alternatives to global (un)justice by critically engaging local histories to challenge global designs.

Situating ourselves in the town of Middelburg, we begin a dialogue that addresses global social justice, connecting at the same time the legacy of European slave trade and the Jewish holocaust. The question then becomes how to make visible the pluriversality of experiences subsumed under the hegemonic design of the modern/colonial world order? We speak of ethics and tolerance while learning to listen and engage with one another with respect.

A video impression of the previous editions of the summer school can be watched here.
For an interview with course organizers Walter Mignolo and Rolando Vázquez, please go here.

 Democracy and the Others of Europe


9th Annual Decolonial Summer School
19th June 2017 – 5th July 2018 (2.5 weeks)
University College Roosevelt (Middelburg, The Netherlands)
Credits: Utrecht University Certificate (6 ECTS)

The Middelburg Decolonial Summer School, in its ninth year, will continue to explore ‘What does it mean to decolonize?’ and will focus on the ‘Others of Europe‘. We will walk around praxis of living in harmony and plenitude that call the universality of western democracy and its Eurocentric legacy into question.

By Others of Europe we understand both the other Europes inside, silenced and shattered by the narratives of modernity (Roma, Gitanos, Gaelic, African Diaspora, Suomi, immigrants,…) as well as the others of Europe outside  (first nations and indigenous from Africa, the Americas and Asia). The others of Europe is also the non-Eurocentered Europe within European territories, as well as the critique of Eurocentrism in Africa, Asia and the Americas. Eurocentrism is not a geographic but a complex set and flows of believes, knowledges and affects (sensing) still orienting the life of billions of people.

By Democracy we understand both the Eurocentered name and vision of living together in harmony and the pretext to impose European vision of governance to the rest of the planet. Therefore we do not take democracy for granted as we confront it with the Euro-US un-democratic politics towards the other Europe and the others of Europe. What “decolonizing democracy” may mean will be explored in relation to the double trajectory of the Others of Europe: its internal and external subjugated people’s.

The resurgence of Ubuntu in Africa, of Sumak Kawsay in South America, of He in China, of Ummah in Islamic communities allows us to think that pluriversal visions of governmentality and of conviviality are possible.  The first decolonial step to move towards pluriversality is to decenter and humble the Eurocentric universal rhetoric of democracy in order to liberate alternative praxis of living in harmony.

Could we envision communal and global orders predicated in pluriversality rather than in universality?  Could we think beyond the categories of Western civilization learning from non-European cultures, civilizations and traditions that the rhetoric of modernity silenced, disavowed and deligitimized? Can we envision praxis of living that allow for co-existing alternatives?



Deadline for registration: 01 April 2018

If you have questions please email us at decoloniality[at]

Mignolo Walter (Argentina) & Rolando Vázquez (Mexico/The Netherlands)
Jean Casimir (Haiti)
Maria Lugones (tbc) (Argentina/US)
Gloria Wekker (The Netherlands/Suriname)
Fabian Barba (Ecuador)
Manuela Boatcă (Rumania/Germany)
Teresa María Díaz Nerio (Domenican Republic / The Netherlands)
Jeannette Ehlers (Denmark)
Rosalba Icaza (Mexico/ The Netherlands)
Patricia Kaersenhout (The Netherlands/Suriname)
Alanna Lockward (Dominican Republic/ Germany)
Ovidiu Tichindeleanu (Rumania)
Madina Tlostanova (Russia/Sweden)




 Centre for Humanities

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4 thoughts on “

  1. Alan Brandão

    Hi everyone!
    First, congratulations for this fundamental iniciative. Here in Brazil we live the bleeding scars of the european slavery and colonialism in our social structure on the everyday actions of the repressive forces and in the lack of relevants social politics for the minorities (not to mention the cutural invisibility and prejudice of the indian and african influence on the formation of our country). I Wanna know if this is a presencial course or an online course, like an Distance education course? Thanks for the attention and let’s move foward to build a world less intolerant!

    1. decolonialsummerschool Post author

      Hi Alan, thanks for getting in touch! The course will be held in Middelburg, the Netherlands and is attendance-based. However, we will also try to make some material available online after the course — you can already find interviews and audio recordings of some of last year’s sessions in the ‘archive‘ section.

  2. charlottejanehaynes

    Is there somewhere that explains what documents are needed for the application? When I go to the Utrecht University page, I can’t seem to find what I will need for the application before I go through the process of submitting it. Thank you!

    1. decolonialsummerschool Post author

      You’ll be asked to provide some information about your educational background, but most importantly to explain your motivation to join the course (you can do this in the application form itself, you don’t have to upload a separate document). No further documents are needed.

      If you have any further questions about the application process, feel free to contact the course organizers directly at decoloniality[at]


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