Psychologies of not Knowing
On the (Re)Production of Oppression via Processes of not Knowing or Ignorance
Keywords:Oppression, Privilege, Ignorance, Feminist epistemology, Critical race epistemology
Social and liberation movements all over the world have acted on the premise that oppression is kept alive, among other ways, through psychological mechanisms. Feminist and critical race epistemologies such as “feminist standpoint theories” and “epistemological ignorance” suggest that there might be different forms of not knowing involved depending on the social location of the (not) knowing subject. In this paper we suggest that the concrete psychological mechanisms involved in not knowing or outright ignorance differ according to one’s position in the social fabric of oppression and privilege. Drawing on various critical psychological and psychoanalytic reflections, as well as interpreting selected passages from a group discussion among elderly retirement home residents in Vienna, we illustrate how social position is translated into lack of knowledge about systems of oppression and privilege
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Copyright (c) 2021 Nora Ruck, Katharina Hametner, Alexandra Rutherford, Markus Brunner, Markus Wrbouscheck
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