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Rethinking the Academy

Beyond Eurocentrism in Higher Education

Augie Fleras

Universities and colleges like to self-idealize as relatively neutral and value-free sites of higher learning. In reality, the idea of the Westernized academy is deeply embedded in a Eurocentric logic that not only excludes alternative forms of knowledge and knowing, but also remains racialized, gendered, and sited in coloniality with respect to governance, scholarship, and entitlements. Efforts to address this gap between the ideal and reality have tended toward diversifying the academy through multicultural initiatives in diversity, inclusion, and equity. However helpful as a first step, these interventions are insufficient in generating the kind of substantive changes that would abort the academy’s crisis of legitimacy. Moves to decolonize, ungender, and deracialize the academy will require a commitment to the transformative principles of inclusivity, including a focus on those root causes associated with structural barriers and systemic biases. It remains to be seen if the academia can rise to the challenge of deEurocentrizing the idea of the academy along postEurocentric lines, while engaging the emergent demands and evolving realities of a postmulticultural world.
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Augie Fleras

Citizenship in a Transnational Canada offers a distinct look at the prospect of rethinking citizenship in a contested world of shifting narratives, evolving models, ongoing challenges, and future possibilities. The book’s central theme embodies a critical awareness that we no longer live in a national citizenship world but rather in one reorganized around the emergent realities, discourses, and practices of a postcitizenship world that is reshaping how we think, talk, and do citizenship. A new vocabulary is thus required for thinking, talking, and doing citizenship if there is any hope of formulating a narrative consistent with a world of posts, trans, and isms.

The book is also premised on the assumption that the citizenship concept is experiencing an identity crisis ("what it is?") and a crisis of confidence ("what should it be doing?") in an increasingly diverse, changing, and complex world, disenchanted with the certainties of the past although unsure of what lies in store. New citizenship narratives and practices are emerging that not only challenge the conventional citizenship model of a single nation-state within a territorially bounded framework but also capitalize on the complexities of transmigrant identities across a networked web of transnational linkages, postnational realities, and a postmulticultural world of diverse-diversities. No less salient are the postcolonial politics that accompany the politicization of Indigenous peoples’ citizenship arrangements commensurate with their constitutional status as "the (de facto) sovereigns within."

The paradoxes and possibilities that accompany the conceptual makeover of national citizenship regimes along "postcitizenship" lines are explored as well across the settler domains of Canada and (to a lesser extent) the United States, Aotearoa/New Zealand, and Australia.

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Postmulticulturalism

Realities, Discourses, Practices

Augie Fleras

Postmulticulturalism: Realities, Discourses, Practices looks to analyze and assess the current salience and future prospects of Canada’s official multiculturalism by recasting the understanding of its past, present, and future through the prism of a postmulticulturalism lens. This book begins with the observation of a messy postmulticultural world of transnationality, cosmopolitanism, postethnicity, and multiversality, rather than an ordered multicultural world of homogeneity, centrality, and clarity. However durable and popular as a diversity governance model, Canada’s official multiculturalism is no longer theoretically attuned to the realities and demands of this rapidly changing, deeply networked, and diversely complex era. In what is arguably the first book on postmulticulturalism as diversity governance, Postmulticulturalism proposes a new governance mindset that conceptually engages the principles and dynamics of a postmulticultural world as a discursive framework for living together with/in/through a complexity of differences. This book also contends that any move beyond multiculturalism as diversity governance is not about rejection or retreat, but more accurately it’s about building on its positives while moving positively forward in ways theoretically aligned to 21st-century challenges.