The lack of value given to Latinas' cotidiano goes hand in hand with the lack of appreciation for the epistemology of all oppressed people. Ignorance about the value of subjugated knowledges contributes to the oppression of the vast majority of the people in the world. The recognition and valuing of their subjugated knowledge are intrinsic to their liberation, which indeed is part and partial of the flourishing of all life.
Mitakuye Oyasin: The Insurrection of Subjugated Knowledge
This research is based on the sexual life histories of ten women, some heterosexual and some lesbian identified, as narrated to each other in two collaborative inquiry groups. Our ages ranged from 41-51 and all of us were professionally educated and employed. Although our inquiry focused on the sexual life histories of these women, in this paper, we address the process of narration within collaborative inquiry groups as a method of cultural change. We examine identity as the intersection of self and culture, narrative as the articulation of identity, and unnarrated experience as subjugated knowledges. We begin to build a theory of cultural change as occurring through the uncovering of silenced and subjugated knowledges, and the collective storying of these knowledges within the context of a collaborative inquiry group. We present our data in fragments and woven throughout the theory we are beginning to build. We do not present any of the women's lives as a cohesive narrative, but instead present them in parts as pieces of a larger social narrative. Society provides each us with narratives with which to make sense of our lives. Part of socialisation into a culture is to begin to story our lives in the same ways as those around us. These stories tell us what we should value and strive for in our lives. They tell us what we must avoid.
The Insurrection of Subjugated Knowledges - YouTube
As academics receive training to think, write and teach, we also start thinking in ways that tend to reinvest in dominant ideologies and we often lose faith in subversive ones. We literally talk ourselves out of alternative political imaginaries by being so eloquent and persuasive about the totality of hegemony. And by the time our training is complete, many of us are more interested in gaining the recognition of our peers (by detailing the topography of the dominant) than in investing in the chimera of change and transformation. Michel Foucault’s advocacy, therefore, for subjugated knowledge as ‘disqualified knowledge,’ knowledge that lacks legitimacy and that cannot be turned into a ‘science,’ becomes more and more attractive as universities become more invested in marketing knowledge, in knowledge markets and in knowledge for profit. When we hold something back from the rigid protocols of our disciplines, when we let loose on a thought, a whim, a fancy, we leave the realm of rigor altogether and begin an intellectual trip into the utopian, the field of the possible if not probable.
Bringing Subjugated Knowledge Forms into the Academy