Understanding Development: Philosophical and Theoretical Explorations
How do theories of development (such as modernisation, dependency and national development) imagine our futures?
Discussions on development are often around themes of ‘progress’, ‘improvement’ and ‘moving forward’. It is tied to ideas of a good society, and always calls upon an imagined future. How do theories of development (such as modernisation, dependency and national development) imagine our futures? This course will reflect critically on the cognitive, ethical and social dimensions of the single word. We will look at the history of the idea of development, the way ethics and social action are connected with it, and the knowledges that sustain modern development. What is development knowledge? How is it produced and how does it change over time? What are the background assumptions to such development knowledge? The course includes lectures, discussions, case studies, problem-based learning methods and films.