- Introduction: scoping the terrain of decolonization
- Gray, Mel; Coates, John; Yellow Bird, Michael; Hetherington, Tiani
- Decolonizing Social Work p. 1-24
- Resource Type
- book chapter
- The recognition of the rights of Indigenous Peoples worldwide reached a new level following the UN General Assembly's adoption of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples on 13 September 2007. The Declaration is a major step toward recognizing the need to improve the situation of impoverished and marginalized Indigenous Peoples throughout the world and represents a strong political statement that acknowledges their rights to self-determination, to own and control their territories and resources, and to preserve their cultures. Most importantly, it affirms that 'all doctrines, policies and practices based on or advocating superiority of Peoples or individuals on the basis of national origin or racial, religious, ethnic or cultural differences are racist, scientifically false, legally invalid, morally condemnable, and social unjust'. Similarly, the emergence of Indigenous social work must be seen in light of the profession's struggle to deal with many of these trends, circumstances and issues. Decolonization can be seen as a continuation of social work's advocacy on social justice and of progressive elements within the profession that challenge hegemonic forms of practice. In Indigenous Social Work around the World, Gray, Coates and Yellow Bird (2008) raised awareness of Indigenous social work and explored various practice and educational approaches in working with Indigenous Peoples. Given that there are a number of important themes and ideas in social work that affect Indigenous Peoples: colonialism, oppression, sovereignty, self-determination, cultural rights and the relevance of Western social work approaches, to name a few, Indigenous social work, especially at the international level, represents an important and necessary shift that is bringing new and fresh perspectives into the ambit of social work theory, research, education and practice. Increasing interest in international social work has also had a flow-on effect of enhancing the desire of the profession to develop culturally relevant practice approaches. Moreover, the number of social work education programmes that include international content in their curriculum continues to grow. These various developments can be brought together as diverse attempts to decolonize social work. Hence, following on the success of Indigenous Social Work around the World, this edited collection seeks to showcase further case studies of diverse attempts to decolonize social work and further the work of those seeking to make social work relevant to a wider audience.
- Indigenous social work; post colonial; decolonisation
- Reprinted from ‘Introduction: Scoping the Terrain of Decolonization’, in Decolonizing Social Work ed. Mel Gray, John Coates, Michael Yellow Bird & Tiani Hetherington (Farnham: Ashgate, 2013), pp. 1-24. Copyright © 2013.
- Full Text
- Hits: 1629
- Visitors: 1085
- Downloads: 244
|View Details Download||ATTACHMENT01||Publisher version (open access)||2 MB||Adobe Acrobat PDF||View Details Download|