When I first started teaching this material in the
late 1990s, the challenge was to find enough material that was
available in translation, so that it could be taught to students who
can't read the relevant original languages. Now, though, there are
several anthologies, a growing secondary literature, and a lot more
texts in translation. (Nevertheless, there remains plenty of
for translation-minded folks!) Below is a list of some of that work.
There is plenty more out there, but the aspiration of this page is to
get you started. I've focused on books. However, you should also take a
look at the free database of papers and articles on Latin American
philosophy at Phil
been lots of argument about this issue, and
there is a significant literature within Latin American philosophy
concerning just this issue. For a concise and helpful overview, see
excellent entry on
Latin American philosophy in the Cambridge
That said, I tend to favor an expansive notion of Latin American philosophy that includes philosophy produced in Latin American and any philosophy that is responsive to that work or primarily aimed at engaging with philosophers based in Latin America. On this conception of Latin American philosophy, there is no one thing that constitutes Latin American philosophy. Rather, it is a collection of sometimes overlapping but frequently distinct philosophical communities and approaches that include many of the categories familiar to the U.S. (analytic and Continental philosophy) but also autochthonous movements (culturalist philosophy, the philosophy of liberation), unusual strands of familiar traditions (a phenomenological tradition tracing back primarily to Hartmann and Scheler rather than Husserl and Heidegger), and in some places, there remains a strong influence from Marxist and Thomistic traditions. In short, Latin American philosophy is straightforwardly part of the larger Western philosophical tradition, but it has its own history of how those influences played out, sometimes yielding distinctive positions that aren't part of the canonical tradition you will have learned as an undergraduate or in graduate school.
For an expansive
set of overviews on the Latin American universe, see A Companion to Latin American Philosophy,
by Nuccetelli, Schutte, and Bueno. It is more comprehensive than
anything else out there in English. Unfortunately, it is also
For primary source material, I strongly recommend
material in its entirety,
rather than selections from much longer texts. However, any of these
anthologies can get you started with (mostly) selections from the
diverse primary source materials out there.The Mendieta volume lean
towards contemporary works; the Gracia & Millan volume and the
Nuccetelli and Seay are primarily historical.
Some anthologies and monographs with more specialized subject matters:
There are a variety of historically significant philosophers based in Latin America who have had English-language translations of one or another monograph in print. Most of that work is now out of print, but among those volumes are:
And, of course, there are some reasonably available texts by Las Casas and Sor Juana.
The most widely available work in contemporary
Latin American philosophy may be writings by and responding to Enrique Dussel
For representative work tied primarily indebted to
or concerned with post-coloniality,
Lots of recent work that has been in conversation
with Latin American philosophy might be regarded as Latino philosophy. Some
Besides the above figures already mentioned, there is an important body of excellent work in mainline analytic philosophy by Latin American-born philosophers. See the work of, for example, Mario Bunge, Hector-Neri Casta–eda, Agust’n Rayo, and Ernest Sosa, among others. There are important groups of analytic philosophers operating in various places in Latin America, including The Instituto de Investigaciones Filos—ficas, as well as U.S.-based groups of analytic philosophers from Latin America, such as the American Association of Mexican Philosophers.
Last updated on 8/15/11.