Northwestern University’s new curriculum initiative brings together researchers from across the globe and a wide range of disciplines to focus on critical theory in the Global South. The group of new undergraduate and graduate inter-university research projects and courses reflects contemporary, historic and economic conditions that extend well beyond a traditional European focus in critical theory. The courses, workshops, exchanges and other related efforts are designed to deepen and broaden the understanding of critical theory in the Global South, an area of scholarship that increasingly challenges core assumptions about research in the humanities and social sciences and the methodologies employed for analysis.
Through the initiative, at least nine new courses are being developed through collaborations between professors based in Latin America, South Africa, and North America, linking regional critical theory traditions that have not always been thought in relation to one another. Moreover, by critically interrogating organizational terms such as “the global South,” “Latin American critical theory,” and “Eurocentrism,” as well as oppositions such as “center-periphery” and “North-South,” the project aims to produce new courses particularly reflective of the values of critical theory.