The CLR James Journal


published on November 30, 2021

Mark Lewis Taylor

Earth Politics of the Spiritual Ground: Toward Decolonizing Imperio-Coloniality’s Torture State

Amid the coloniality of power, earth politics is a political spirituality. It fosters decolonizing practices that create what Colombian anthropologist Albán Achinte terms “re-existence”—a “redefining and re-signifying of life in conditions of dignity.” Earth politics’ spirituality can be read across the writings of Gloria Anzaldúa, Drucilla Cornell/Stephen Seely, and Paget Henry. Earth politics, in Henry’s words, is a “drama of consciousness” with a “spiritual ground,” a consciousness that is both “vertical” and “horizontal”—better, a spherical and ambient consciousness “grounding” an earthy awareness that is historical and poetic, local and planetary. Earth politics infused with such consciousness can become a force against even imperio-colonial practices of torture against colonized peoples. U.S. activist Sister Dianna Ortiz, embodies this counter-force of earth politics in her “life after torture,” in her collective struggle against the neo-imperialist torture-state that is the United States.

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