Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey

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SEM: Decolonizing Knowledge

Western colonization gave rise to Eurocentric, patriarchal, capitalist, Christian, and heteronormative paradigms that lead us to believe, advocate for and retain an epistemic hegemony. Today, these centuries-old epistemic hegemonies dictate our pedagogy, inquiry, and praxis when it comes to the acquisition, management, and dissemination of knowledge. This is because knowledge, more often than not, is generated by and within these systems of global inequalities and they, in turn, reinforce various forms of hierarchical, unequal and discriminatory structures built on race, gender, class, sexual, caste, ethnic, religious, linguistic and other identities. The implications of learning under hegemonic epistemologies (for example, in institutions of higher education) on various careers - such as development, peace and conflict, education, environment and related disciplines - is that we start with the belief that we have the answers to the world's most pressing problems leading us to re-colonize the colonized through our impositions. In this course, as a first step, we will question our own epistemologies. Then, we will use decolonial (understood as going beyond post-colonial) theories to understand how knowledge is acquired, legitimized, and disseminated. Further, we will explore how decolonized knowledge can challenge power structures, whether in the classroom or when working in the field.
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DPPG 8652

All Sections in Spring 2022 - MIIS

Spring 2022 - MIIS

DPPG8652A-S22 Seminar (Iyer)