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Community Engagement and Intercultural Praxis

Dancing with Difference in Diverse Contexts


Mary Jane Collier

Although community engagement to enhance justice, equity, and inclusion is at the heart of this book, dancing with difference is the overarching metaphor. It is used to explain diverse relations between contexts, institutions, structures, community organizations, and groups, and the diverse relationships between organizational representatives and community members.
It is these dances with difference through which groups and individuals deal with contextual forces, negotiate cultural identities, subjectivities, and positioning, and orient themselves toward their work.
Featuring case studies of several international, national, and local organizations, the book showcases both first-hand and public discourses related to community engagement work from Nepal and Northern Ireland to Kenya, Zimbabwe, and the U.S.
A framework of critical/interpretive intercultural praxis is offered to guide research and practice across the case studies. It is designed to benefit scholars, students, and practitioners who work in community-based settings by presenting a relevant and applicable guide for entering into community engagement.
Contents: Mary Jane Collier: Critical Community Engagement and Dancing with Cultural Difference: Analytical Framework and Research Itinerary – Mary Jane Collier: Dancing with International Development: UN and INGO Community Engagement in Nepal – Mary Jane Collier: Dancing Through Difficult Conversations: Facilitating Community Engagement In Northern Ireland – Cleophas Muneri/Mary Jane Collier: Dancing with Democratization: Civic Spaces of Struggle in Zimbabwe – Karambu Ringera/Mary Jane Collier: Beyond Development to Grassroots Dances: International Peace Initiatives in Kenya – Brandi Lawless/Mary Jane Collier: Dancing in Circles®: Evaluating U.S. Community-Based Initiatives – Brandi Lawless/Mary Jane Collier: Moving Families Out of Poverty – Jaelyn deMaría/Mary Jane Collier: Dances of Neoliberal Resistance and Activism for Land Reclamation: Strategic Community Landscapes in New Mexico – Yea-Wen Chen/Mary Jane Collier: Dancing with Praxis: Collaborating with a Pan-Asian Nonprofit in U.S. Southwest – Mary Jane Collier: Dancing with Difference across the Case Studies: Implications for Community Engagement as Critical/Interpretive Praxis.