Toward Decolonisation of Nordic Higher Education

Decolonisation within academia is the process of interrogating curricula and pedagogy for silences, absences, misrepresentations, and erasures in all disciplines due to the skewed perspectives arising from a global history of colonisation and imperialism. Colonial and imperial practices that have long determined how disciplines are formulated, understood, and taught in universities and schools, have been the subject of more recent work by postcolonial and decolonial scholars such as Asher (2017), Jain (2015), Viswanathan (1996), and Mbembe (2016). Decolonising curricula entails an understanding of how our contemporary view of the world and how we teach it is heavily influenced by colonial and imperial narratives that we no longer remember (that is, they are submerged or lost to public discourse and circulation and acknowledgement), much less endorse. A decolonial lens reveals ‘how the invisibilized dynamics’ of colonialism affect the ways in which education is constructed, governed, assessed, and taught, as well as how colonial perspectives and ideologies are considered ‘knowledge’, or reliable research data; and finally, how such a view of education is used to perpetuate unequal social systems (Tuck & Yang, 2012, p. 2).  

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