Ethics, Activism and the Anti-Colonial: Social Movement Research as Resistance

Lewis, A.G. (2012) Ethics, Activism and the Anti-Colonial: Social Movement Research as Resistance. Social Movement Studies, 11:2, 227-240

This article focuses on an anti-colonial approaches to activism by identifying areas of continued colonization and centering research in these areas in terms of knowledge production. The author outlines how activism research has changed over time to move to the streets to directly engage with organized groups from the confines of academic institutions. The definitions of colonialism that influence the definitions of anti-colonial approaches in activist research are addressed. The author argues that researchers must recognize the persistence of colonialism in systems of oppression and domination and seek to include such an ethical understanding into research practice.
Ethics: this paper addresses how an ethical research practice looks like. Ethics in activist research is driven by a reflectivity that allows the researcher to step back and objectively look at his own behavior in relation to the research subjects. Questions of ethic also arise in the quest to foreground the subject’s position as well as the duo roles of researchers as activists and academics.

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