Bedford Branch Seminar
While calls to decolonise education often provoke heated political and ethical discussion, less attention is paid to the knowledge claims - and their wider implications - of such calls. My paper (a work in progress) focuses on two central claims that underpin the decolonising argument:
1. That Western higher educational institutions must recognise the pervasive white supremacy upon which they are founded, and introduce structural and curricular changes accordingly.
2. That so-called “objective knowledge” is politically constructed at the expense of the objectified, and in such a way as to universalize the viewpoint of the powerful.
My position is that while the decolonising argument sheds light on some serious inadequacies and problems within academia (and Anglo-American culture more widely), the ability for abstract thought, objective knowledge and aesthetically powerful art, have been, and remain, important resources for an intellectual and imaginative freedom, and wider socio-political progress. I will also explore tensions between the philosophical ideals of freedom, equality and justice, and their socio-historical reality.
Dr Alka Sehgal Cuthbert is an English teacher, researcher and co-editor of 'What Should Schools Teach? Disciplines, subjects and the pursuit of truth' (IoE UCL Press). She has research interests in liberal education, aesthetics, social realist epistemology and curriculum theory.
Academic affiliations: PESGB, SRHE and BSA.
Part of the PESGB Bedford 2018/19 seminar series
Tickets are available at: http://www.eventbrite.co.uk/o/pesgb-bedford-60701
For further information and details, contact Dr. Neil Hopkins (Branch Secretary, PESGB Bedford branch), firstname.lastname@example.org, or Dr. Oli Belas, Oliver.Belas@beds.ac.uk.