Power, knowledge and pedagogy: an analysis of the educational exclusion of Dalits in Nepal

PhD Thesis

Poudel, L. 2007. Power, knowledge and pedagogy: an analysis of the educational exclusion of Dalits in Nepal. PhD Thesis University of Kent
AuthorsPoudel, L.
TypePhD Thesis
Qualification namePhD

This thesis examines the educational exclusion of Dalits in Nepal. It analyses the extent to which the hierarchical caste system and educational policies and practices create exclusionary pressures upon Dalits. This analysis is based on the data obtained from literature and documents, autobiographical exploration and the ethnographic fieldwork conducted at Basipur village and Gauripur School in a Tarai District of Nepal.

This thesis is an attempt to listen to Dalit voices and experiences about educational exclusion as a part of the process of including the excluded. This representation of Dalit agency is richly contextualised within the changing political, cultural and socioeconomic context of Nepal. The thesis seeks to challenge and contest the pathological stereotypes of Dalits. It contributes to the literature concerned with understanding culturally specific issues of educational inclusion and exclusion in Nepal.

This thesis analyses how schooling in Nepal has reproduced structural inequality and discrimination. Such exclusionary practices have been exacerbated by ambivalent policy texts. Indeed, the increased support for private schooling has maintained Dalits’ exclusion from education and society. On the other hand, public schooling has also played a significant role in challenging the hierarchical caste structure and discriminatory discourses within society. Through developing a ‘schooled identity’, Dalit children build relationships with non-Dalit children. Such relationships have the potential to challenge and contest discriminatory ideologies for both Dalit and non-Dalit children.

This thesis suggests that developing inclusion involves a process of understanding and changing exclusionary and discriminatory power relations. This process of change involves a continuous political and social struggle.

Publication process dates
Deposited23 Jul 2013
Output statusUnpublished
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