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Structural Discrimination & Knowledge Production in Post-Colonial Societies. Verene A. Shepherd Member of the WGPAD Geneva, April 13, 2010. THE IMPORTANCE OF EDUCATION – MARCUS GARVEY.

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Structural Discrimination & Knowledge Production in Post-Colonial Societies

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Structural discrimination knowledge production in post colonial societies l.jpg

Structural Discrimination & Knowledge Production in Post-Colonial Societies

Verene A. Shepherd

Member of the WGPAD

Geneva, April 13, 2010


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THE IMPORTANCE OF EDUCATION – MARCUS GARVEY

  • “Education is the medium by which a people are prepared for the creation of their own particular civilization and the advancement and glory of their own words”


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PREOCCUPATION IN THIS PAPER

  • Obstacles to that post-colonial project of mental liberation through an education system that promotes a more liberating narrative of self.

  • Racism that masquerades as classism even in contexts where African descended people are in the majority

  • the sexism in some texts used in schools.


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STRUCTURAL DISCRIMINATION: TRADITIONAL DEFINITION

  • The policies of empowered race, ethnic, gender institutions and the behaviour of the individuals who implement these policies and control these institutions which are race/ethnic/gender neutral in intent, but which have a differential and/or harmful effect on minority/race/ethnic/gender groups.” (Fred L. Pincus, Readings, 2000)


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INDIRECT DISCRIMINATION OCCURS….

  • when a neutral, or seemingly harmless, policy, rule or practice has a discriminatory effect against a certain group of people.

  • when a policy or procedure which appears to treat everyone equally has the effect of disadvantaging certain groups.


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AS USED IN THIS PAPER

  • Differential access to quality secondary education because of the competitive entrance processes and the disadvantageous poor primary education in some cases

  • Education that does not accept differences (e.g. rastas; non-Christians)

  • The content of history education/history textbooks, which does not empower people of African descent, Asians and indigenous peoples

  • Sexism in history education


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Education Commission Report (Swaby Report), 1907 - 1909

  • The purpose [of elementary education] is a school training which will end at a comparatively early age, and may produce the intelligent and industrious labourer, or form the groundwork on which may be built the technical skill required by the mechanic or artisan. The latter [secondary] is carried on to an age when manhood is approaching, and aims at fitting for their work the thinkers of the community, those who follow the learned professions, the leaders and organisers, or at least those who serve in the higher ranks of industry and commerce.


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SAMPLE LITERACY RATES - 2009 (UNDP)


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SAMPLE LITERACY RATES - 2009 (UNDP)


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WORLD ADULT LITERACY RATES, 2000 (UNESCO ISE, 2002)


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FROM PRIMARY TO SECONDARY


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Women in the 1831/32 Emancipation War in Jamaica


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Women in the 1831/32 Emancipation War in Jamaica


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Women in the 1831/32 Emancipation War in Jamaica


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Women in the 1831/32 Emancipation War in Jamaica


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Women in the 1831/32 Emancipation War in Jamaica


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Women in the 1831/32 Emancipation War in Jamaica


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Women in the 1831/32 Emancipation War in Jamaica


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SHAME AND KNOWLEDGE

“… In a country such as ours, where shame about the past too often fills the place that should be held by knowledge, knowledge of the past must play its part in our liberation from the bonds of the past. ”

Elsa Goveia, 1925-1980


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Former P.M. Tony Blair (Britain)

  • “… the bicentenary offers us a chance not just to say how profoundly shameful the slave trade was – how we condemn its existence utterly and praise those who fought for its abolition, but also to express our deep sorrow that it ever happened, that it ever could have happened and to rejoice at the different and better times we live in today.”


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