The University of Massachusetts Amherst
University of Massachusetts Amherst

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Ricardo Vega Leon

Professional Title: 

Graduate Student

Office: 

Thompson 518

Email: 

Office Hours: 

Fall 2021 Wednesday, 1-3pm

Degree: 

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

Bio: 

My research interests lie in the history of political thought, the political theory of empire, political economy, and the politics of the abolition of slavery. In my current research I develop a theory of capitalist abolitionism, which was a political-economic project that sought to abolish slavery and reproduce colonial capitalism. Through an interpretation of Alexis de Tocqueville's reflections on the abolition of colonial slavery and the French Empire, I show how capitalist abolitionists argued for using colonial primitive accumulation in order to ensure Black labor as the supply of labor-power in the plantations. These processes of extra-economic coercion reproduced racial categories in that they enacted a racial division of labor.