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Postcolonial Theory: A Language for a Critique of Globalization?

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Postcolonial and globalization theory are both complex terms intertwined in an equally complicated relationship. Some theorists have been reluctant to establish a useful relationship between the two theories. In this paper, I will argue that postcolonial theory has a contribution to make to globalization and vice versa and that postcolonialism and globalization can indeed occupy the same discursive space. In conceptualizing the relationship, I present brief definitions of the concepts. I discuss definitions of these terms separately, not to emphasize differences but rather to highlight points of convergence. Postcolonial and global theories are not incompatible at all. Their histories are interconnected. To be useful, the relationship between postcolonial and globalization theory must be conceptualized within actual historical and political contexts and not disconnected from actual issues of power. This implies and emphasizes the imperative to understand the two concepts within a framework of political intervention.

Affiliations: 1: Communication and Study Skills Unit, University of Botswana, Gaborone, Botswana


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