Free

Multiple Dates

What is Epistemic Decolonization? - Online Seminar Series

Actions and Detail Panel

Free

Event Information

Share this event

Date and Time

Location

Location

Online Event

Event description
An online seminar series promoting discussion of epistemic decolonization.

About this Event

PLEASE REGISTER FOR EACH SEMINAR DATE THAT YOU WISH TO ATTEND

SEMINARS WILL LAST AT LEAST ONE HOUR, AND NO LONGER THAN 1.5 HOURS

Jan 15th 16:00 SAST (14:00 GMT)

Epistemic Decolonisation: what, why, how? (Abstract below)

Veli Mitova

Chaired by Zinhle Mncube

Jan 28th 16:00 CET (15:00 GMT)

How to Decolonize your Research Methods? Philosophy of/as Action Research (Abstract below)

David Ludwig

Chaired by Azita Chellappoo

Feb 10th 17:00 IST (11:30 GMT)

Proof in Indian Logic and Mathematics: Analysing Epistemological Presuppositions (Abstract below)

Smita Sirker

Chaired by Liam Kofi Bright

Feb 16th 9:00 PST (17:00 GMT)

Bearing Witness (Abstract below)

Alison Wylie

Chaired by Abigail Nieves Delgado

March 11th 16:00 SAST (14:00 GMT)

The epistemic decolonisation path latent in Helen Verran’s Science and an African Logic (Abstract below)

Chad Harris

Chaired by Taraneh Wilkinson

Mar 22nd 15:00 SAST (13:00 GMT)

The Logic of Decoloniality (Abstract below)

Jonathan Chimakonam

Chaired by Michael Diamond-Hunter

We are pleased to share details of this online seminar series, to take place between January and March 2021. Please register for each of the seminars you wish to attend.

‘What is Epistemic Decolonization?’ has a number of motivations. The most important is to stimulate direct discussion and reflection amongst philosophers of science concerning the whiteness of their field, the legacies and influences of colonial and postcolonial power on their understanding of what knowledge production entails (what science is, and how it works), and ways in which ongoing research can be redirected so as to bring non-western and indigenous philosophy more closely to its centre. The series is intended to offer a range of points of departure for subsequent material change at both the level of individual philosophers of science and also their professional organisations. Possible changes include, but are not limited to, citational practices, collaborative practices, teaching practices and materials, geographies of disciplinary power, hiring practices, and the evaluation of scholarly work. We think the time is particularly ripe not only as a response to various global political climates, but also some important recent scholarship. Regarding the former, the most notable include the momentum generated by the Black Lives Matter movement, and also the strengthening of far right and white supremacist politics (which regularly claims ‘western philosophy’ for its own). With regard to recent scholarship, our more specific motivations include a 2020 special issue of Philosophical Papers on ‘Epistemic Decolonization’ edited by Veli Mitova, and a forthcoming edited collection, Global Epistemologies and Philosophies of Science, edited by David Ludwig, Inkeri Koskinen, Zinhle Mncube, Luana Poliseli, and Luis Reyes-Galindo.

Last, we appreciate that placing the series under the umbrella of decolonization is not straightforward. Whether decolonization is the right term to describe the wide variety of activities, actions, and changes underway on campuses around the world is not something we take for granted. Nevertheless, as a way of coordinating amongst disparate and diverse actors, and as a way of signalling intent, the term has been and remains very useful. We pose the title of the seminar series as a question, precisely so that participants (speakers and audience alike) will know that they are encouraged to challenge any assumptions or generalisations that our framing might entail.

Series organisers:

Zinhle Mncube (University of Johannesburg/University of Cambridge)

Azita Chellappoo (Ruhr-University Bochum)

Katherine Furman (University of Liverpool)

Dominic Berry (London School of Economics/University of Birmingham)

In partnership with:

University of Birmingham, Department of Philosophy

University of Johannesburg, African Centre for Epistemology and Philosophy of Science

University of Liverpool, Department of Philosophy

Ruhr-University Bochum, Department of Philosophy

Jan 15th 16:00 SAST (14:00 GMT)

Epistemic Decolonisation: what, why, how?

Veli Mitova

The decolonisation of knowledge is finally – and happily – becoming a hot topic in anglophone philosophy. But what exactly is epistemic decolonisation? why should we engage in it? and how should we go about it? In this talk, I draw on African thinkers to construct a roadmap of the terrain along these three axes for theorising epistemic decolonisation, and to argue that some answers to the what, why, and how questions are better than others.

Jan 28th 16:00 CET (15:00 GMT)

How to Decolonize your Research Methods? Philosophy of/as Action Research

David Ludwig

What would it mean to decolonize philosophy of science? This talk shifts the focus from basic research to action research as a methodology for putting scientific practice in the service of social change and social justice. Tracing the history of action research in the domain of international development, it outlines methodological shifts from a paternalistic humanitarianism of developing the "Third World" to critical engagement with the co-production of science and society. In a second step, the talk applies these methodological lessons to philosophy as science. “Philosophy of action research” therefore leads to “philosophy as action research” as one mode of articulating decolonial ambitions in philosophical practice.

Feb 10th 17:00 IST (11:30 GMT)

Proof in Indian Logic and Mathematics: Analysing Epistemological Presuppositions

Smita Sirker

To respond to the question, whether Indian logic (or Indian mathematics) has any system of rigorous proof similar to the Western notion of proof, we need to understand how logic in India developed from the methodology of philosophical debates. Consequently, its mode(s) of proof, stemming from its own organic context of emergence and growth, naturally differed from that in the West. This talk will address why the Western notion of proof is not reflected in Indian logic(s) (as they developed within different philosophical systems in India), for reasons rooted in the epistemological concerns underlying Indian philosophy.

Feb 16th 9:00 PST (17:00 GMT)

Bearing Witness

Alison Wylie

My aim in this seminar is to sharpen the focus of questions about what role we philosophers of science can usefully play in decolonizing the epistemic underpinnings of our own practice as well as that of the sciences we study. Recent strategies for decolonizing archaeological practice in settler/colonial contexts are a rich source of advice and of cautionary tales in this connection. I draw on these – specifically, an account of inquiry as a practice of “bearing witness” – to make concrete the promise and the challenges of building collaborative partnerships that can reorient what we do and how we do it.

March 11th 16:00 SAST (14:00 GMT)

The epistemic decolonisation path latent in Helen Verran’s Science and an African Logic

Chad Harris

Helen Verran’s Science and an African Logic, which tackles the public problem of mathematics and science education in post-independence Africa , is renowned for its insightful account of the differences between English and Yoruba numbering systems and how these differences in turn generate differing generalizing logics. In this talk I will focus on some neglected aspects of Verran’s argument in the book, specifically those relating to ontology and knowledge. I will draw on Verran’s insights to generate an account of epistemic decolonization that is resilient to the twin perils of universalism and relativism.

Mar 22nd 15:00 SAST (13:00 GMT)

The Logic of Decoloniality (Abstract below)

Jonathan Chimakonam

Mainstream decolonial thinkers, especially those from the global south, tend to conceive coloniality as a repudiation of autoethnography. This lopsided conception is undergirded by the classical two-valued logic, which dichotomises and polarises reality. Following the same logical structure, most formulate decoloniality as a repudiation of metanarrative. But the deployment of such a divisive either-or logic presents both programmes as displacement narratives. I contend that applying the same logic that underlies coloniality in constructing a decolonial programme can only yield new coloniality. But can we not rethink decoloniality in a way that will unfold a veritable programme free from the entrapments of the logic of coloniality? I will explore the potential to alter the theorisation of decoloniality as ‘repudiation of metanarrative’ that responds to the ‘repudiation of autoethnography.’ My aim will be to reformulate decoloniality as the ‘authentication of autoethnography towards the complementarity of seemingly opposed variables.’ I will clarify the logic of coloniality, make a case for a new logic of decoloniality and present the Ezumezu system as a model. In so doing, I will orchestrate a shift from binary contradiction that results from the logic of coloniality to binary complementarity, which characterises a truth-glut and trivalent system, as a better, progressive logic for decolonial thinking.

Location

Online Event

Save This Event

Event Saved