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Book part
Publication date: 7 August 2013

Sujata Patel

This chapter shifts contemporary debates on Eurocentrism from its focus on European social theory to an analysis of its moorings in non-Atlantic sociological traditions…

Abstract

This chapter shifts contemporary debates on Eurocentrism from its focus on European social theory to an analysis of its moorings in non-Atlantic sociological traditions and especially those within ex-colonial countries. It discusses the sociological/anthropological visions of two first generation sociologists/anthropologists from India, G. S. Ghurye (1893–1983) and D. P. Mukerji (1894–1961), within Orientalist-Eurocentric positions and explores how these are reinvented in the work of contemporary sociologist T. N. Madan (1933–). It suggests that colonial processes and its institutions together with “derivative” nationalist ideas have played and continue to play important mediatory role in organizing these Orientalist-Eurocentric visions.

The chapter presents three sets of arguments. First it suggests that in order to understand postcolonialism it is imperative to lay out the organic links between Orientalism and Eurocentrism. Eurocentrism and its mirror Orientalism mediated to frame social science language in terms of the binaries of universal (the West) and particular (the East). The particular was represented in India through the discipline of anthropology. The latter studied “traditions” through the themes of religion, caste, and family and kinship. When sociology emerged as a discipline in India in the early twentieth century, it continued to use the language organized by anthropology to analyze the particular cultural traditions of the country. Second, I suggest that these binaries also framed nationalist thought and the latter mediated in framing the sociological ideas of G. S. Ghurye and D. P. Mukerji which were embedded in Eurocentric-Orientalist principles. Third, I analyze the ideas of the contemporary social theorist T. N. Madan to indicate how his perspective continues to derive its positions from Orientalist-Eurocentric positions and ignores an engagement with critics who have questioned Orientalist Eurocentrism. Disregarding these arguments implies the legitimation of the latter perspective derived from the disciplines of sociology/anthropology.

The chapter contends that a decolonized critique of colonial social science has existed in other regions of the world including India, and that this perspective needs to be retrieved by social theorists to reformulate the sociological discourse as a study of modern India. It also suggests that contemporary analysis of Eurocentrism needs to move out from within the circuits of knowledge defined by received colonial geopolitical enclaves in order to assess the way production, distribution, and consumption of Orientalist-Eurocentric perspectives have organized sociological traditions across the world including the Global South.

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Decentering Social Theory
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78190-727-6

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Article
Publication date: 18 February 2021

Kiara S. Summerville, Erica T. Campbell, Krystal Flantroy, Ashley Nicole Prowell and Stephanie Anne Shelton

Qualitative research consistently centers Eurocentrism through courses' integrations of ontological, epistemological and axiological perspectives. This literal…

Abstract

Purpose

Qualitative research consistently centers Eurocentrism through courses' integrations of ontological, epistemological and axiological perspectives. This literal whitewashing was a source of great frustration and confusion for the authors, four Black women, who found their identities omitted and disregarded in qualitative inquiry. Using Collins' outsider-within concept and collective narratives to center their experiences, the authors seek through their writing to actively repurpose and re-engage with qualitative scholarship that generally seeks to exclude Black women.

Design/methodology/approach

Theoretically informed by Collins' outsider-within concept, the authors use Deleuze and Parnet's collective biography to tell the stories of four Black doctoral students negotiating race, gender, class and intellectual identity, while critiquing Eurocentric theory, through coursework. The collaborative writing process provided shared space for the engagement of individual thoughts and experiences with(in) others' narratives.

Findings

Black women can interpret qualitative inquiry outside of the Eurocentric norm, and qualitative courses can provide spaces for them to do so by repositioning Black women philosophers as central to understanding qualitative inquiry.

Originality/value

Through collective biography (Deleuze and Parnet, 2007), this paper centers the voices of four Black women scholars who use a creative writing approach to think with/through theory as Black women (Jackson and Mazzei, 2012). The paper offers new discussions of and ways in which qualitative researchers might decolonize Eurocentric ways of knowing in qualitative inquiry and qualitative pedagogy from students' perspectives.

Details

Qualitative Research Journal, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1443-9883

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Book part
Publication date: 12 February 2013

Gregor McLennan

Sociology is often pitched as the social science discipline most obviously in need of postcolonial deconstruction, owing to its ostensibly more transparent Eurocentrism as…

Abstract

Sociology is often pitched as the social science discipline most obviously in need of postcolonial deconstruction, owing to its ostensibly more transparent Eurocentrism as a formation. For this reason, even postcolonial scholars working within the ambit of sociology are reluctant to play up its analytical strengths in addition to exposing its ideological deficits. Without underestimating the profound impact of the growing body of postcolonial theorizing and research on self-reflexivity within sociology, this paper points up some key ways in which the structure of comprehension within postcolonial critique itself is characteristically sociological. Alternatively, if that latter conclusion is to remain in dispute, a number of core epistemological and socio-theoretical problems must be accepted as being, still, radically unresolved. Consequently, a more dialectical grasp of sociology’s role within this domain of enquiry and style of intellectual politics is needed. I develop these considerations by critically engaging with three recent currents of postcolonial critique – Raewyn Connell's advocacy of “Southern Theory”; the project of “reinventing social emancipation” articulated by Boaventura de Sousa Santos; and the “de-colonial option” fronted by Walter D. Mignolo.

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Postcolonial Sociology
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78190-603-3

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Book part
Publication date: 5 September 2013

Alex Faria

Drawing upon the concepts of transmodernity, pluriversality and border thinking the author stands in a more practical fashion for the co-creation of an-other performative…

Abstract

Purpose

Drawing upon the concepts of transmodernity, pluriversality and border thinking the author stands in a more practical fashion for the co-creation of an-other performative CMS which fosters the decolonization of (critical) management studies – as a way to contribute “to concretely changing the world(s) for the better” (as claimed by the organizers of the symposium “should critical management studies get anything done?” held at the Academy of Management Meeting in 2012 in Boston).

Methodology/approach

From a more practical and less opaque perspective on border thinking it is shown how and why border thinking can both enable and constrain critical scholars and people to move across the borders of the colonial difference and from Eurocentric modernity toward transmodern pluriversality.

Findings

The current performative turn of CMS fails to address the agency of critical knowledge as a potential reworking of Occidentalism which can be mobilized to “manage” the rise of alternatives and knowledges from the rest of the world in general and from emerging economies in particular.

Originality/value of chapter

Border thinking as a crucial concept from the coloniality/modernity research program from Latin America is taken as an important contribution from the colonial difference to the co-creation of decolonial management studies (DMS), an-other performative CMS which fosters the construction of a world in which many worlds and knowledges can coexist as a way to change it for the better.

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Book part
Publication date: 18 August 2014

Alex Faria, Sergio Wanderley, Yuna Reis and Ana Celano

We engage in a particular way the Anglo-American claim that a more performative Critical Management Studies (CMS) is needed to foster transformations in the “world out…

Abstract

Purpose

We engage in a particular way the Anglo-American claim that a more performative Critical Management Studies (CMS) is needed to foster transformations in the “world out there” by putting into practice our learnings from a case study at Galpão Aplauso (GA), an NGO located in Brazil, which main role is to (re)socialize dispossessed youngsters through a critical methodology informed by anthropophagy.

Design/methodology/approach

Drawing upon an engaged investigation informed by both performative CMS and decoloniality from Latin America we embody a performative CMS “otherwise.” Through the engagement with GA, and corresponding disengagement with our institutions, we propose decolonial anthropophagy as a way to move beyond Eurocentric critiques of Eurocentrism and decolonial work monopolized by full-time academics.

Findings

From a decolonial perspective it is shown that the performative turn within CMS could be used as a way of bringing “critical development” and “critical knowledge” to “subalterns” and the “rest of the world” from a perspective of coloniality. An anthropofagic perspective on decoloniality and critique shows that “subalterns” have much to teach us and our institutions and represents a way to decolonize theory-practice and academic-nonacademic divides.

Originality/value

The critical-decolonial anthropophagic perspective put forward in this chapter may represent an opportunity for CMS to move beyond much of its Eurocentric traditions, thus enlarging its geographic and cultural references. It may offer CMS an alternative critical performativity concept from the South which enables CMS to become a “re/disconnector,” instead of a connector, between the Euro-American traditions and the “rest of the world,” and making things happen “otherwise.”

Details

Getting Things Done
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78190-954-6

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Book part
Publication date: 1 January 2005

Deborah Phillips, Ian Law and Laura Turney

At first glance, it might seem from the statistics that 18- to 20-year-old members of minority ethnic groups are doing relatively well in terms of higher education. They…

Abstract

At first glance, it might seem from the statistics that 18- to 20-year-old members of minority ethnic groups are doing relatively well in terms of higher education. They are in fact better represented in UK colleges and universities than young whites. However, this is far from the whole story. Certain black groups, such as African–Caribbean males and Bangladeshi females, are significantly underrepresented in higher education in general and certain programmes in particular. For example, there has been difficulty recruiting Black and ethnic minority students into teacher training programmes (DfEE, 1998). The experience of participating in higher education is also often different for black and white students. Black and minority ethnic students are more likely to be concentrated in the new universities. In the mid-1990s, only 0.5 percent of the students at the older established universities came from a Black or minority ethnic background, compared with 14.4 percent in the new universities (DfEE, 1998). This inequality helps to perpetuate a system of white privilege, one that is entrenched in other areas of public life in the UK. Black and minority ethnic students are also more likely to study part-time than white students, are more likely to drop out of courses, and more frequently opt for lower-level qualifications (i.e., a diploma rather than a degree).

Details

Higher Education in a Global Society: Achieving Diversity, Equity and Excellence
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-0-76231-182-8

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Article
Publication date: 11 March 2019

Emanuel Leite Junior and Carlos Rodrigues

The purpose of this paper is to report a critical analysis of the plan recently launched by the Chinese Government for the development of the football industry in China…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to report a critical analysis of the plan recently launched by the Chinese Government for the development of the football industry in China. The analysis encompasses the impact exerted by the new policy instrument on the Eurocentric trend that configured the power relations in the football realm, as well as the challenges raised by barriers deeply rooted in culture that Chinese authorities should face in order to foster pervasive change and thus create the conditions for success.

Design/methodology/approach

The analysis of the policy document has been carried out under the light of the theory of innovation, namely, the contributions of Peter Drucker, who looks at innovation as a means to foster change in the social and economic environment, inducing new patterns of behaviour and creating new habits. This theoretical framework provides ground to the analytical endeavour because the Chinese plan for football development presents the overall goal of shifting the habits of sporting practice and consumption.

Findings

The first and most visible “innovative” effect of the policy took the form of a shock provoking an unprecedented change in the geopolitics of football and the inherent disturbance in the traditional Eurocentric structure of football power relations. At the domestic level, the Chinese Government is assuming the “educating” role in order to change behaviour and habits, that is, to ensure the transformative power necessary to overcome barriers deeply rooted in culture. Accordingly, rather than the availability of financial resources, the capacity to materialise this pervasive switch in behaviour and habits in terms of football practice and consumption is the major challenge, the one of a social innovation endeavour.

Originality/value

The research reported in this paper provides an original and innovative approach to the analysis of a sports relevant public policy document, namely, because of the theoretical framework wrapping up the analytical endeavour.

Details

Sport, Business and Management: An International Journal, vol. 9 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2042-678X

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Article
Publication date: 1 February 1993

Melanie E. Thwaites

Begins by defining the term “ethnic minority group”.Racism and bias in children′s literature are seen as amajor issue, with the lack of black studies′ non‐fictionand…

Abstract

Begins by defining the term “ethnic minority group”. Racism and bias in children′s literature are seen as a major issue, with the lack of black studies′ non‐fiction and Eurocentrism in existing history and science stock being a key issue for some potential users. Sees the absence of appropriate periodicals, music cassettes, film videos and print material as a barrier to use, particularly to speakers of lndian subcontinent languages. The absence of multilingual guiding and staff knowledgeable both in languages and race relations is also seen as a factor affecting library use. Discusses racist terminology in the subject catalogue, and the special needs of Muslim women. Concludes that although barriers do exist, there are many positive initiatives under way to combat them successfully.

Details

Library Management, vol. 14 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0143-5124

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Book part
Publication date: 26 November 2019

Kevin Olson

This chapter rethinks the future of critical theory by engaging Amy Allen’s recent work. Allen does the Frankfurt School a great service by drawing a sharp-edged picture…

Abstract

This chapter rethinks the future of critical theory by engaging Amy Allen’s recent work. Allen does the Frankfurt School a great service by drawing a sharp-edged picture of some significant problems. I aim to think along with her in a spirit of shared sympathies that follow sometimes divergent paths. I agree with Allen’s critique of Frankfurt tendencies toward Eurocentrism, progress thinking, and historical teleology. However, I also argue that critical theory must be more thoroughly reconfigured to adequately address the struggles and wishes of our age. Specifically, recent work of the Frankfurt School displaces critique in two important ways. The first is a tendency to work at a paradigmatic, meta-level of analysis rather than focusing on concrete problems. The second is a tendency to rely on democratic procedure for normativity without taking account of the tensions and contradictions in actual political cultures. In place of these uncritical tendencies, we need more interpretive and freely experimental critical strategies. One example is an interpretive approach that problematizes political cultures, revealing the tensions ignored by proceduralism. Another example lies in the rich archives of postcolonial thought that have had such a large impact on contemporary political and social life. Postcolonial critique is a non-dogmatic and flexible form of interpretation that has great potential to address problems of racism, international inequality, and the false universalism of many of our ideals.

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Book part
Publication date: 12 February 2013

Gurminder K. Bhambra

This article addresses the way in which perceptions about the globalized nature of the world in which we live are beginning to have an impact within sociology such that…

Abstract

This article addresses the way in which perceptions about the globalized nature of the world in which we live are beginning to have an impact within sociology such that sociology has to engage not just with the changing conceptual architecture of globalization, but also with recognition of the epistemological value and agency of the world beyond the West. I address three main developments within sociology that focus on these concerns: first, the shift to a multiple modernities paradigm; second, a call for a multicultural global sociology; and third, an argument in favor of a global cosmopolitan approach. While the three approaches under discussion are based on a consideration of the “rest of the world,” their terms, I suggest, are not adequate to the avowed intentions. None of these responses is sufficient in their address of earlier omissions and each falls back into the problems of the mainstream position that is otherwise being criticized. In contrast, I argue that it is only by acknowledging the significance of the “colonial global” in the constitution of sociology that it is possible to understand and address the necessarily postcolonial (and decolonial) present of “global sociology.”

Details

Postcolonial Sociology
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78190-603-3

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