The fourth section of such “observations” is where Kant explicitly speaks about race and racialization, of the black, in some consistently problematic – but certainly, programmatic, which is to say, choreographic – ways.
The Negroes of Africa have by nature no feeling that rises above the ridiculous. Mr. Hume challenges anyone to adduce a single example where a Negro has demonstrated talents, and asserts that among the hundreds of thousands of blacks who have been transported elsewhere from their countries, although very many of them have been set free, nevertheless not a single one has ever been found who has accomplished something great in art or science or shown any other praiseworthy quality, while among the whites there are always those who rise up from the lowest rabble and through extraordinary gifts earn respect in the world. So essential is the difference between these two human kinds, and it seems to be just as great with regard to the capacities of mind as it is with respect to color.
In the lands of the blacks can one expect anything better than what is generally found there, namely the female sex in the deepest slavery? […] Indeed, Father Labat reports that a Negro carpenter, whom he reproached for haughty treatment of his wives, replied: You whites are real fools, for first you concede so much to your wives, and then you complain when they drive you crazy. There might be something worth considering, except for the fact that this scoundrel was completely black from head to foot, a distinct proof that hat he said was stupid. 
The capacity of Enlightenment philosophy to understand anything about the Negro, anything of the black, is immediately inhibited by the aversion, the choreographic gathering and placement to the side, of thought that animates Kant’s rendering of some others’ thoughts. That is, Kant first must acquiesce to Mr. Hume and then to Father Labat, and they act as the verifications for and the grounds of such philosophic thought. But what is coordinated here, in time, in space, as a choreographic arrhythmia at the heart of his theorizing? Though stated a few years later from his writing about these Observations, Kant’s theory of Enlightenment is the escape from sociality and sociability in order to think oneself alone; the scholar, the philosopher, the subject emerges when that individual thinks for himself without the aid of others. Throughout the whole of his observations, Kant’s glance alone was enough to think the various peoples of the world, prejudicial though his thoughts may have been. But when it came to the Negro, to the black, to the concept and ground of thinking such Being, Kant deferred to others, he entered into the very conditions which Enlightenment would so escape.
Color comes to stand in for the set of mental incapacities of the black. The incapacity to think, the inability to be anything otherwise than stupid, Kant would find on the epidermal structure. The epidermis, then, is purposeful insofar as it makes it acceptable and expedient to necessitate a social project of thought in order to declare a truth, a social project that was the antithesis to the formation of the scholar, of the philosopher, of the subject. So who, then, would declare such erroneousness about the Negro, about the black? And if the Enlightenment is constituted by the incapacity to think a certain set of objects by way of enlightened coordination, what can we state of those objects? How do those unthought objects avoid, and by what politics is this avoidance; and how is this avoidance ontological, previous to the situation of Enlightenment?
Enlightenment thought, we might say, is not yet begun. An enlightened philosophy of blackness was not achievable for Kant. As the skin stands in for a certain incapacity to think, this philosophical tradition was constituted by that irreducible incapacity. What does it mean that the object that resisted the glance, quite literally previous to Kant’s answering the question of enlightenment, cannot be thought anti-socially? The “logical” possibility for Enlightenment and for a universalism is broken down before its enactment by the concept of blackness, the figure of the black, the Negro. To establish an Enlightenment depends upon a glance at, which is at the same time an aversion for, blackness wherein the object of the glance, of the averted gaze is placed off to the side – the periphery – of thought.
Enlightenment is the coordination of such displacement, it is the choreographic itinerary and protocol for claiming an object by refusing its counterfactual. We must think the grid created by such thought and what slipped through the cracks. This grid is the zone of articulation for the irreducible unrepresentability of blackness as belonging, as “proper” and property. This zone lays bare blackness as “irreducibly disordering,” as the resistance to being owned even in the place of the mind. Blackness and subjectivity are constantly at odds and Kant rightly stumbled upon it as an emergence of a social. His vulgar dismissal of blackness still displayed the constitutive nature of blackness: the production of a sociality. This is not to claim that sociality, of itself, produces only good things but rather to highlight the inescapability of sociality. It’s that blackness runs through him as a negative charge, so scary that he subsequently must theorize a way around and against this sociality. This indeed is Enlightenment.
 Kant, Louden and Zöller, pp. 59, 61.