The University of Massachusetts Amherst
University of Massachusetts Amherst

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Ricardo Vega Leon

Professional Title: 

Graduate Student


Thompson 712


Office Hours: 

Spring 2021 by appointment,


B.A., Universidad de los Andes (Colombia), 2017


My research interests are in the political theory of empire and colonialism and Marxism. I contend that colonial capitalism is a central element of imperialism and colonialism, manifested through forcible dispossession and expropriation in colonial primitive accumulation. My current research theorizes colonial primitive accumulation by interpreting Tocqueville's theory of capitalist abolitionism. I sustain that Tocqueville enforces colonial primitive accumulation by transforming freed slaves into wage-laborers through dispossession and proletarianization. Moreover, I am also working on a research project that proposes an interpretation of Herbert Marcuse's concept of one-dimensionality in relation to his reflections on imperialism and colonialism. I argue that Marcuse expanded the concept of one-dimensionality to the Third World, enabling a critique of the ideological reproduction of colonial capitalism.