Works

SON[I]A #281: José Luis Barrios Lara

by 8 February 2019

Artists

José Luis Barrios Lara (MX)

Commissioner

Radio Web MACBA

Location

Online

Format

Podcast
Listen

José Luis Barrios Lara is a philosopher, art historian, curator, critic, professor, and author of numerous essays and books. In his work, Barrios reflects on the insurmountable aporias that arise in contemporary global capitalism, between the free market economy and democracy as a political and legal system.

He traces the origins of these contradictions back to the perverse hidden alliances that have gone hand in hand with the advance of colonialism, modernity, and industrial economy since the fifteenth century. And that have now become a neo-slavery regime that unleashes the full force of its violence, exploitation and expropriation on migrant bodies. According to his analysis, this violence is deployed in the form of a cultural and cognitive neo-colonialism that despotically manages the forms of representation or non-representation of bodies.

In this podcast, José Luis Barrios Lara reflects on the founding myth of the West, modernity, and the invention of the other. He considers identity politics as a political tool and a means for the management of bodies in space, questions the effectiveness of the epistemologies of the South, and interprets the global migration crisis as a form of neo-slavery. A grim scenario in which, he says, certain intersections of art and politics still have the power to destabilise the semantic field of representation and make room for the subversive.

Related content

Back to overview