Recovering unrecognised deCentred experience
Holliday, A. 2021. Recovering unrecognised deCentred experience. in: Kumar, M & Welikala, T. (ed.) Teaching and Learning in Higher Education: The Context of Being, Interculturality and New Knowledge Systems Bingley Emerald. pp. 185–195
|Kumar, M & Welikala, T.
This chapter begins with the premise that much that has been considered ‘new’ within Centre-Western institutions of research and learning has already been there outside the West but not recognised as such. A reconstructed ethnographic account, using creative non-fiction, of the experience of a doctoral student abroad in a Western university shows how she struggles to recover the unrecognised ‘new’ from her own deCentred past. The element of struggle is made harder by powerful Centre narratives of denial that she meets and also brings with her. This analysis follows a postcolonial, critical cosmopolitan approach informed by the social action theory of Max Weber. This is embodied in my grammar of culture, at the centre of which small culture formation on the go brings intercultural experience from the everyday past. However, this deCentred, hybrid, third-space process is constantly derailed and truncated by Centre discourses and narratives that seek to segment and rationalise learning and research processes within positivist and neoliberal structures and false essentialist conceptualisation of hybridity and third space. The chapter also addresses my own positionality as a Western researcher and educator and how I am able to write about the deCentred Self struggling against a divisive Centre Other. I claim insider knowledge of the workings of Centre structures and a neoliberal West as steward discourse that covertly Others beneath a seductive yet false veneer of well-wishing. My own interculturality is enriched by a personal struggle to find hidden reali- ties. The reconstructed ethnographic account will therefore also demonstrate how false perceptions from the Centre make it difficult for all of us to arrive at deCentred understandings.
|DeCentred; Interculturality; Hybridity; Action; Recognition; Margins
|Teaching and Learning in Higher Education: The Context of Being, Interculturality and New Knowledge Systems
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|14 Jun 2021
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