Decolonize ALL The Things

The UNsettling reflections of a Decolonial Scientist in a Constant State of Rage

Black – a racial (social-political) category based on Partus sequitur ventrem that provided the gendered and sexed frameworks upon which chattel slavery in the United States of America were based on the passage of the cursed status of chattel from that of the mother to the child. Those racialized as Black are generally seen as of recent African descent in the West.  Others also racialized as Black are the Indigenous peoples of Australia, another settler colony.

Colonialism – a power relationship in which an external nation state (colonizer) directly controls the political & economic system of another nation state &/or people (colony).  Involves the presence of a military force to crush dissent & the migration of people from the colony to the nation state of the colonizer.

Cultural Imperialism – imposing a country’s worldview, values, & lifestyle on others.  Many critics of today’s globalization use this term to describe how the US actively exports its ideology of consumerism & free-market capitalism.

Power – your ability to exercise/carry out your will/demands despite resistance. Power is the probability that one actor within a social relationship will be in a position to carry out their will despite resistance  (Weber’s “Economy & Society” (1922)).

Domination – requires discipline/training; is based on the chance that someone will obey a command. Domination is the probability that a command with a given specific content will be obeyed by a given group of persons (Weber’s “Economy & Society” (1922)).

NOTE: Within domination consent is important. Democracies create relations of domination because people willingly participate and give up their own individual control of their territories. Why do people consent? Because they believe they also have something to gain in being part of this domination. Domination requires willingness & consent. Those who are dominated think it’s a legitimate relationship where you can get something out of it. Both parties get something out of it.

Hegemony – “Hegemony is a big word for a fairly simple idea. When socially powerful people use their influence to convince less powerful people it is in their best interest to do what is actually in the most powerful people’s best interest, that’s hegemony.”  In essence, hegemony is a geopolitical concept of indirect domination through ideologies (ideology informs HOW a person should act or behave in society).   – definition from Sociology In Focus

EXPANSIVE NOTE: Also feel free to read more about Antonio Gramsci’s concept of hegemony here & here.  As stated by Hoare & Smith in the preface of Antonio Gramsci’s “Selections from the Prison Notebooks”, “In this context it is also worth noting that the term “hegemony” in Gramsci itself has two faces. On the one hand it is contrasted with “domination” (and as such bound up with the opposition State/Civil Society) and on the other hand “hegemonic” is sometimes used as an opposite of “corporate” or “economic-corporate” to designate an historical phase in which a given group moves beyond a position of corporate existence and defense of its economic position and aspires to a position of leadership in the political and social arena. Non-hegemonic groups or classes are also called by Gramsci “subordinate”, “subaltern” or sometimes “instrumental”” (1992: xiv).

Socialization – the process of learning & sharing norms, customs, values & ideologies in order to be able to participate in society.  Socialization tells us that if we follow the set of rules, we can expect certain things in return.  It is through socialization that we learn the dominating rules, social facts, ontologies, and ideologies of the society we are a member of.

Heterosexism – a system of oppression that grants institutional & cultural privileges to anyone who conforms to “traditional” gender roles.  It either penalizes or disregards the lives of lesbian, gay, bisexual, questioning & transgender people as well as alternative family structures.

Homophobia – an irrational fear of sexual attraction to the same gender or sex.  Also a term for all aspects of the oppression of LGBTQIA* people.

Imperialism – a stage of advanced capitalism in which more powerful & developed nation states dominate less powerful & less developed countries & territories through military force & indirect political control.  Imperialism provides economic gain through access to raw materials, cheap labor, & markets for good & services, & it often serves strategic geopolitical purposes.

LGBTQIA*– Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender & Questioning/Queer, Intersex, Asexual.  Other terms include LesBiGayTrans or Queer.

Nationalism – a sense of national consciousness exalting one nation above all others, placing primary emphasis on promotion of its economic, political & cultural interests.  Often used by colonized peoples to assert their independence of master’s domination (e.g. Malcolm X).

Neocolonialism – a power relationship in which an external nation state indirectly controls the political & economic system of another nation state &/or people – often former colonies.  May involve the presence of a military force to crush dissent & the migration of people from the former colony to the colonizer.

Pan-Africanism – An analysis developed in the early 20th century calling for a world union of African people in spite of differences in geographical location, religion, & culture.  Pan Africanism calls for the unification of all African peoples under scientific socialism.  Go to the All African People’s Revolutionary Party’s site for more information.

Cisheteropatriarchy – a system of power based on the supremacy & dominance of cisheterosexual men through the exploitation & oppression of women and the LGBTQIA*.  Also referred to as sexism.  This includes oppressive constructs such as homophobia, transphobia, biphobia, etc..

Prison Industrial Complex (PIC) – Neoliberal policies, practices & institutions of all levels of government designed to remove the discarded (those who are unemployable, poor, uneducated, etc.) from society to further the social control of those negatively impacted by globalization.

White Supremacist Racism – a system of power based on the supremacy & dominance of “White” people.  “White” is a political concept created by the European & colonial ruling elite of the 17th & 18th centuries that is revealed in attitudes, behaviors & institutional systems in which white people maintain supremacy over peoples of color.  Human beings create & maintain the systems which, in turn, reinforce white supremacist racism.

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