By Djelal Kadir
The language of prophecy and divine predestination fills the pronouncements of these who ventured around the Atlantic. the consequences of such language and their implications for present theoretical debates approximately colonialism and decolonization are legion. Kadir means that during this supposedly postcolonial period, richer international locations and the privileged nonetheless manage the rhetoric of conquest to justify and serve their very own worldly ends. For colonized peoples who stay this present day on the "ends of the earth," the age of exploitation can be no diversified from the age of exploration.
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Additional info for Columbus and the Ends of the Earth: Europe's Prophetic Rhetoric as Conquering Ideology
The 30 April 1492 amplified and formalized version of the Capitulaciones de Santa Fe is barely one folio in length, recto and verso. i... consists of a dual-verb phrase: "descobrir y ganar," to discover and conquer. The construct occurs seven times, a symbolic redundancy for some numerologists, no doubt. In the first instance, the verbal binary occurs in the infinitive, undeclined: "Por quanto vos, Christoval Colon, vades por nuestro mandado a descobrir y ganar . . [Forasmuch as you, Christopher Columbus, are going by our command to discover and conquer .
Ge," after all, happens to be mother earth herself whose telluric body is the very terrain on which any geographer's fancy inevitably lands. His work being "not only poetic but geographical," Waldseemüller, no doubt, descried, too, the poetic possibilities of the geographical in the nomination. It is in this spirit that I yoked earlier the poetic possibilities of Hawthorne's "Ghostland" and More's u-topia to the real imaginary that Waldseemüller's gamesmanship implies.  However, to my knowledge, no one has yet remarked what may have resonated in the name most ironically for the obsessively etymologizing Waldseemüller.
What comes undone for us in such reading is the very nature of the rhetorical, that is, the interested and self-interested usage, and the presumption of ideology, that is, the realization of usage as actuality. And in that undoing, we glimpse (however opaquely, for our own view and our own enablements are by no means pristine and unpresuming) something of the conditioning assumptions and motivating factors that go into the making of history in the making. If, as we have seen, America's name argues lexically against the very ontology or existence of America, its foundations as a New World belatedly founded rest on the equally antithetical and slippery grounds of remonstrance and protestation.