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SEMINAR: De-coloniality and the Global South - Cláudio Pinheiro

On the 4th of June 2021, Prof Cláudio Pinheiro presented a seminar entitled "De-coloniality and the Global South: Revisiting political engagements and transformative disciplinary projects in Social Sciences". This was part of Nelson Mandela University's Chair for Critical Studies in Higher Education Transformation's (CriSHET) [Re]Directions/Ukutshintshwa Kwendlela: Knowledge, Praxes and African-Purposed Curriculum seminar series.

You can enjoy Prof Pinheiro's presentation in the video below:


In recent decades, voices of important Southern thinkers - from within or outside academia - have gained renewed relevance for Social Theory at large. Who are these thinkers and where is this South? The process of "promoting" Southern voices has involved "discovering" supposedly new scholars, practitioners and activists, and their ideas, that are later certified as Theory. This has brought much needed representativity of races, genders and histories on the understanding that the institutionalization of this kind of diversity would decolonize academic canons. To what extent did it bring effective transformation to knowledge production, to the university, to science or to social life at large? Despite representing an accessible intellectual toolkit, de-colonization does not always sit well with vernacular critical thinking, and sometimes ends up reinforcing the inequality it wishes to overcome. What sort of alternative engagements are needed for producing renewed engagement with scholarship? This talk, conceived as a conversation, invites exploring Southern Attitude, a resourceful concept for addressing structures of power in academia through a grounded engagement with critical thinking and teaching.

Speaker Bio

Cláudio Costa Pinheiro is Professor of Asian and African Studies, at Rio de Janeiro Federal University (BRA); Chairman of Sephis Programme (NED); Visiting Professor for Critical Studies in Higher Education Transformation, Nelson Mandela University (ZAF); and a member of the Global (De)Centre network.


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