Paper: Are we ready to challenge coloniality in development/humanitarianism?

Paper details

Paper authors Honour Musuku
In panel on Decolonising aid? Issues and directions
Paper presenter(s) will be presenting In-Person / Online


This paper challenges the language and theoretical frameworks around decolonising development/humanitarianism to help open up discussion. In particular, it explores notions of coloniality and the resistance-response of decoloniality which is emerging from the analysis of scholars and activists in the Global South.
As the darker side of the modernity project, coloniality had its origins in the European enlightenment and has continued post-decolonization period. Yet until recently coloniality has not been widely discussed and is poorly understood by Global North academics and practitioners in the development/humanitarian sectors. In this paper, I review the range of terminology used in both the Global North and South, and the ways in which is shapes our responses to Global South calls for liberation and freedom.
The views of academics and practitioners are diverse but emphasise need for a decolonial perspective from which development/humanitarianism can be interrogated and understood, and that this can be done through indigenization of the concept of development/humanitarianism. Development needs to be indigenised in order to be decolonial but this cannot be done through subsuming indigenous knowledges and practices into development but rather by challenging the colonial matrix of power at the heart of development and humanitarianism.



Honour Musuku