Southern theory and its dynamics for postcolonial education

Hickling-Hudson, Anne R. (2009) Southern theory and its dynamics for postcolonial education. In Coloma, Roland Sintos (Ed.) Postcolonial Challenges in Education. Peter Lang Publishing Group, New York, pp. 365-376.

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This paper discusses how the exploration of social texts and historical contexts from the global 'South', as put forward in Raewyn Connell's study 'Southern Theory' (2007), can improve the theoretical tools used in postcolonial education analysis. Connell analyses a selection of excellent and compelling social theory texts written by scholars in Africa, India, Iran, Latin America and Australia to show how they challenge and counter the silences, distortions and plain lies of dominant Western social theory. These texts of the global South do not mince words in laying bare the role of the institutions and elites of the West in the destruction, dispossession, and bloodshed involved in creating the world in which we live, and in perpetuating its catastrophes. The texts also reveal intense debates between scholars over their conceptualisations of local, national and global society.

My paper argues that this kind of work is of vital importance to postcolonial studies in education. It helps education scholars to uncover the problematic assumptions and distortions of dominant education thought, and understand different ways of seeing. Postcolonial educators could use this to help both students and teacher unlearn many of our taught perceptions of the world, whether in the global North or the global South. Developing a countervailing social theory in education would sharpen our questioning of the structures of schooling as they relate to society, and tease out new dimensions of postcolonial leadership for education.

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ID Code: 28990
Item Type: Book Chapter
Additional URLs:
Keywords: Global South, Social theory, Postcolonial education, Textual analysis, Countervailing arguments
ISBN: 9781433106491
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > EDUCATION (130000) > SPECIALIST STUDIES IN EDUCATION (130300) > Comparative and Cross-Cultural Education (130302)
Divisions: Current > Research Centres > Office of Education Research
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Education
Past > Schools > School of Cultural & Language Studies in Education
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2009 Peter Lang Publishing Group
Deposited On: 30 Nov 2009 23:58
Last Modified: 16 Jun 2015 05:06

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