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ERIC Number: EJ818077
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2006-Jul
Pages: 14
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 22
ISBN: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-1476-7724
From Comparison to Translation: Extending the Research Imagination?
Dale, Roger
Globalisation, Societies and Education, v4 n2 p179-192 Jul 2006
This paper addresses Appadurai's challenge to expand the research imagination. It follows Boaventura de Sousa Santos in suggesting a need to separate analytically the trajectories of capitalism and modernity. For Santos, this involves the recognition that we cannot solve the problems of postmodernity with the tools of modernity. The paper approaches this problem through a focus on the idea of comparison as a high point of modern social science. It outlines five critiques of the ways that comparison has been used that both assume and reinforce the assumptions of modernity: that comparison is not the only way that relations between states can be elaborated; that cases and variables should not be wrested from their wider contexts; that assumptions of the predominance of the national level, especially as the basis for comparative indicators, are misleading; that the acceptance of a common set of measures constructs silences in the world outside the West; and that it does not ask whose knowledges are being recognised. The paper proposes four possible forms of moving comparison towards what Santos calls "translation"--"expanding mutual intelligibility without destroying the identity of the partners of translation"; a critical theory that recognises that silences are constructed; distinguishing between rules of recognition and rules of realisation; constructing a level at which different concepts may be made commensurable; and creating a set of "education questions" as a "contact zone" where different conceptions may meet to construct reciprocal intelligibility and expand the research imagination. (Contains 1 note.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A