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ERIC Number: EJ799588
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2008-Jan
Pages: 23
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 45
ISSN: ISSN-1071-4413
What Is Hospitality in the Academy? Epistemic Ignorance and the (Im)possible Gift
Kuokkanen, Rauna
Review of Education, Pedagogy & Cultural Studies, v30 n1 p60-82 Jan 2008
The academy is considered by many as the major Western institution of knowledge. This article, however, argues that the academy is characterized by prevalent "epistemic ignorance"--a concept informed by Spivak's discussion of "sanctioned ignorance." Epistemic ignorance refers to academic practices and discourses that enable the continued exclusion of other than dominant Western epistemic and intellectual traditions. The author argues that the academy is responsible for "doing its homework" and addressing its ignorance so it can give an "unconditional welcome" not only to indigenous people but also to their epistemes, without insisting on translation. She proposes that the responsibility of the academy toward indigenous epistemes can be assumed by espousing a specific logic embedded in many indigenous epistemes; that is, the logic of the gift. This logic is characterized particularly by acknowledging and acting upon one's responsibilities to recognize and reciprocate the gift--to ensure the gift is not taken for granted or misused. Here, the author demonstrates why it is necessary to consider indigenous epistemes as a gift, how in the current academic system this gift is not possible, and finally, what needs to be done to enable the gift. She argues that if the academy does not assume its responsibilities, the gift of indigenous epistemes remains impossible. (Contains 11 notes.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Opinion Papers
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A