Global Social Studies Attempts to Think Globally and Act Locally

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In the broadest sense, a Global Studies department seeks to study cultural, political, economic and social relationships in the world with special attention to cultural and political processes, the impacts of globalization and the nature of development. According to their web site, the Global Studies department at Wilfred Laurier University seeks to discuss the responsibilities privileged society has in a world stricken by war and poverty. It seeks to answer how; if possible, it is to ‘think globally’ and ‘act locally’ (Donais, n.d.). In my research I delve into the truth of these statements by exploring the question; how does the Global Studies curriculum at Wilfrid Laurier University reproduce colonial discourses?
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Using ‘radicalized and stereotyped identities’ the colonial curriculum maintained the imperial colonial world view through the creation of the ‘other’ (Crossley & Tikly, 2004, p. 150). This colonial world can be recreated in modern academic curriculums furthering the dichotomous relationship between the ethnic other and ethnic self.
There is plenty of literature about interculturality in the classroom and how educators can engage with students of an ethnic minority without perpetuating their own dominant cultural privilege. There is also literature on how former colonial education systems can relearn how to teach from their own cultural perspective. What is missing is an investigation on how, through curriculum, western privileged education systems reproduce colonial discourses on a structural level. I propose a high level study into how departments are perpetuating the ‘other’ in modern academic institutions through the literature and theoretical perspectives they are presenting to their students.
Anne Hickling-Hudson in her article Cultural Complexity, Post-Colonialism and Educational Change discusses how racism has distorted socio-cultural relationships and how this has shaped how curricula and educational institutions have been formed (Hickling-Hudson, 2006, p. 204). The key idea of Eurocentrism in curriculum is a large part of this. By not giving space for non-European
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