Actionable Postcolonial Theory in Education by V. Andreotti

By V. Andreotti

Andreotti illustrates how postcolonial idea is utilized within the contexts of academic research/critique and in pioneering pedagogical initiatives. She offers an available and precious evaluate and comparability of theoretical debates regarding opinions of Western/Northern hegemony.

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The second aspect is the transformation of the South as a repository of data and the Western academy as the center for value-added theory that transform the raw material collected in the (Southern) “field” into (Western) “knowledge”—keeping Western academy and the Western academic at the center. 44 Actionable Postcolonial Theory in Education “Southern” Minorities Living in the “North”: Trap of Tokenism and Idealized Representation Spivak maintains that one cannot leave one’s own baggage— or historical, geographic, and class positionings—when encountering the Third World, and that her own discipline and positioning, as a Third World academic in the West, is complicit in the reproduction of forms of Western hegemonic power over the Third World.

34) Bhabha accuses discourses of multiculturalism and cultural relativism of preserving the “organicist” mythology of the host community or nation as a means of refusing to address cultural difference. As Moore- Gilbert (1997) summarizes: Multiculturalism does this by implicitly constructing cultures as essentially equivalent and therefore interchangeable in their various parts, leading inevitably to an emphasis on assimilation to the dominant. Cultural relativism, in Bhabha’s eyes, necessarily manages cultural difference in relation to a normative centre, which also serves to reinforce the authority of the dominant culture.

She concludes that “between Patriarchy and Imperialism, subject constitution and object formation, the figure of the woman disappears [ . . ] There is no space from which the sexed subaltern can speak” (Spivak 1988, 306–7). She also uses the example of the political suicide of Bhuvaneswari Bhaduri that was interpreted in the local scene in India as sati to illustrate that even when the subaltern tries to say something, she is “re-interpreted” from an ideological-political standpoint. ” her point is that, in the examples she gives, two meanings of representation are conflated: that of “speaking for” (political representation) and that of “speaking about” or re-presenting (making a Gayatri Spivak’s Contribution 41 portrait “as people are or would like to be”).

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