Research and practice in the contact zone: crafting resources for challenging racialised exclusion

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Sonn, Christopher ORCID: 0000-0002-6175-1030 (2011) Research and practice in the contact zone: crafting resources for challenging racialised exclusion. In: International Community Psychology: Community Approaches to Contemporary Social Problems. Almeida Acosta, F. H. Eduardo, Soto Badillo, Oscar, Hinojosa Rivero, Guillermo, Inguanzo Arteaga, Gonzalo, Sánchez y Díaz de Rivera, María Eugenia and Cuétara Priede, Covadonga, eds. Universidad Iberoamericana Puebla, Puebla, México, pp. 261-278.


In this paper I explore the challenges, tensions and possibilities for pedagogy and community research in contexts where race relations have been, and continue to be, characterised by dynamics of dominance and subjugation. I draw on three areas of research and practice (i.e., developing pedagogy for anti-racism, partnering a community-based agency working to improve the lives of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, and researching immigrant settlements) where I have been involved in examining responses to intergroup relations with a focus on identity construction. Based on this work, I have found myself venturing far beyond the borders of community psychology to identify multiple ways in which people negotiate racialised oppression. This writing has also helped in identifying the intricate ways in which research and practice can inadvertently contribute to oppression. As an example, I discuss whiteness studies and Indigenous studies as part of this venturing. This scholarship has opened up valuable opportunities for me to enhance critical pedagogy and research, and examine the diverse responses to this area of research and pedagogy. I discuss some of the conceptual and methodological resources that have been helpful in making visible symbolic ways in which race related privilege and power continue to shape intergroup relations. I also discuss the importance of investing in different ways of knowing and doing as an essential political imperative for a progressive community psychology. --Invited Keynote Address presented at the 3rd International Conference on Community Psychology; Puebla, Mexico, June 5, 2010.

Item type Book Section
Official URL
ISBN 9786077901204
Subjects Historical > FOR Classification > 1608 Sociology
Historical > FOR Classification > 1701 Psychology
Historical > Faculty/School/Research Centre/Department > School of Social Sciences and Psychology
Historical > SEO Classification > 970117 Expanding Knowledge in Psychology and Cognitive Sciences
Keywords ResPubID23575, colonialism, social identity, racism, race relations, normativity, CANWA, whiteness, The Community Arts Network, Aboriginal people, liberation, social change, reflexivity, Australia
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