Anthropological critique of development: the growth of ignorance

Hobart, Mart

Anthropological critique of development: the growth of ignorance - New York Routledge 2009 - xi,235 p. 22 cm ; Pbk

Introduction : the growth of ignorance? / Mark Hobart --
Segmentary knowledge : a Whalsay sketch / Anthony P. Cohen --
Processes and limitations of Dogon agricultural knowledge / Walter E.A. van Beek --
Cultivation : knowledge or performance? / Paul Richards --
His lordship at the Cobblers' well / Richard Burghart --
Is death the same everywhere? : contexts of knowing and doubting / Piers Vitebsky --
Scapegoat and magic charm : law in development theory and practice / Franz von Benda-Beckmann --
Knowledge and ignorance in the practices of development policy / Philip Quarles van Ufford --
The negotiation of knowledge and ignorance in China's development strategy / Elisabeth Croll --
Bridging two worlds : an ethnography of bureaucrat-peasant relations in western Mexico / Alberto Arce and Norman Long --
Potatoes and knowledge / Jan Douwe van der Ploeg.

This provocative volume, the latest in the EIDOS series, debunks the assumption that the application of Western knowledge in the implementation of economic and social development is an unqualified success. The author argues that it is unacceptable to dismiss problems encountered by development projects as the result of an inadequate implementation of knowledge. Rather, it suggests that failures stem from the constitution of knowledge and its object. By focusing on the ways in which agency in development is attributed to experts, thereby turning previously active participants into passive subjects or ignorant objects, the contributors claim that the hidden agenda to the aims of educating and improving the lives of those in the undeveloped world ultimately perpetuates ignorance


Social Sciences
Intercultural communication
Knowledge, Sociology of
Economic development--Social aspects

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