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After inclusion. Thinking with Julian Go's ‘thinking against empire anticolonial thought as social theory’

Rutazibwa, Olivia (2023) After inclusion. Thinking with Julian Go's ‘thinking against empire anticolonial thought as social theory’. British Journal of Sociology, 74 (3). 324 - 335. ISSN 0007-1315

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Identification Number: 10.1111/1468-4446.13006


This contribution engages Go's generative invitation to think against empire by thinking through the epistemic and disciplinary implications of such endeavour. I zoom in on the need to explicitly address the purpose and ethos of scholarly inquiry and how that translates into decolonial academic praxis. Thinking with Go's invitation to think against empire, I feel compelled to constructively engage the limitations and impossibilities of decolonising disciplines such as Sociology. I glean from the various attempts at inclusion and diversity in society and argue that adding or including Anticolonial Social Thought/marginalised voices and peoples in the existing corridors of power—such as canons or advisory boards—is at best a minimal rather than a sufficient condition of decolonisation or going against empire. This raises the question of what comes after inclusion. Rather than offer a ‘correct’ or single alternative anticolonial way, the paper explores the pluriversally inspired method(ological) avenues that appear when we commit to thinking about what happens after inclusion when the goal is decolonisation. I expand on my ‘discovery’ and engagement with the figure and political thought of Thomas Sankara and how this led me to abolitionist thought. The paper then offers a patchwork of methodological considerations when engaging the what, how, why?—questions of research. I engage with questions of purpose, mastery, and colonial science and turn to the generative potential of approaches such as grounding, Connected Sociologies, epistemic Blackness, and curating as methods. Thinking with abolition and Shilliam's (2015) distinction between colonial and decolonial science, between knowledge production and knowledge cultivation, the paper invites us to not only think of what we need to do more of or better when taking Anticolonial Social Thought seriously, but also what we might need to let go of.

Item Type: Article
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2023 The Author.
Divisions: Sociology
Subjects: H Social Sciences
Date Deposited: 21 Feb 2023 11:06
Last Modified: 22 Jul 2024 01:15

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