Global Ethics, Epistemic Colonialism, and Paths to More Democratic Knowledges

Radical Philosophy Review 21 (2):299-324 (2018)
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Drawing on the work of Enrique Dussel, Linda Tuhiwai Smith, and other scholars of colonialism, this essay traces colonialist legacies in the popular global-ethics literature. I argue that colonialist elements implicit in prominent global-ethics anthologies can foster attitudes of superiority over and aloofness toward economically struggling communities, even when the texts argue for aid to “the global poor.” Finally, I offer suggestions for how those of us who study and teach global ethics in the affluent world might begin to unsettle colonialist baggage and cultivate skills more conducive to democratic global communities.

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Shari Stone-Mediatore
Ohio Wesleyan University

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