Lecture by Dag Herbjørnsrud at Royal Holloway, University of London (CHRONOS): «Intersectional Academy: Deconstructing the Colonial Narratives»

CHRONOS Research Theme Launch Event: On February 10 2020, at 5.30 pm, SGOKi founder Dag Herbjørnsrud held the lecture «Intersectional Academy: Deconstructing the Colonial Narratives« at Royal Holloway, University of London.

Location: 11 Bedford Square, Bloomsbury, London, UK.

The lecture was «Launching our new research theme, Silent Voices«, The Centre for Critical and Historical Research on Organisation and Society (CHRONOS) stated. CHRONOS launched in 2019 as part of the School of Business and Management at Royal Holloway, University of London: «CHRONOS actively provides an interdisciplinary, international and inclusive forum to discuss and develop the plurality of ways in which ‘critical’ and ‘historical’ research into organizations, markets and society can be conducted.»

The event on the 10th of February 2020 was arranged by Dr Olga Kravets, Senior Lecturer in Marketing, and Pauline Maclaren, professor of Marketing and Consumer Research at Royal Holloway.

Abstract of the talk:

“When they enter, we all enter.” This is how Kimberle Crenshaw ended her classical article “Demarginalizing the Intersection of Race and Sex” (1989) three decades ago. As we have entered a new decade, the 2020s, the question is as vital as ever: Which voices do we include, and who do we exclude when we create our canons within the academy? 
In this presentation, Dag Herbjørnsrud will discuss some of the voices that can make a more intersectional academy possible: Gargi and Maitreyi from the Upanishads; Ban Zhao from China; Aishah Al-Ba’uniyyah from Damascus; Sor Juana from Mexico, Nana Asma’u from today’s Nigeria; and Phillis Wheatley, Ida B. Wells, and Audre Lorde
Why are some voices lost within today’s main narratives? What is the connection to the colonial legacy? What tools can help us dismantle ethnocentric and sectional narratives? And how are the new books by Nesrine Malik, on the need for new narratives, and Angela Saini, on the return of race science, relevant to the academy of today – in order for all to enter? Herbjørnsrud will try to describe some academic challenges that stem from the legacy of what he calls “the five 500-year fails”.

Feedback on the lecture:

«Thank you for such rich material!» «I did not know that!» «How can we do better?»

Pauline Maclaren and Dag Herbjørnsrud after the talk.


Dag Herbjørnsrud is a farmer from the north. He is also a global historian of ideas, an editor of the forthcoming issue on “Decolonizing the Academy” in the journal Cosmopolis (Brussels), and a founder of the Centre for Global and Comparative History of Ideas (SGOKI). His journal article “Beyond decolonizing: global intellectual history and reconstruction of a comparative method” (Global Intellectual History) argues for a method based on the notions of complexity, connection, and comparison. Herbjørnsrud has written on women thinkers from the global south (Aeon), the ancient philosophy of Egypt (the American Philosophical Association, APA), and the 4,000 years of African literature (Sciences Humaines). His books include Global Knowledge (2016, not translated).»


NB! Three days earlier, on Friday February 7 2020, Herbjørnsrud held the lecture «From Epistemicide to Global Knowledge: Reconstructing a Decolonised Academy« at the University of Cambridge.
That talk was part of the annual lecture series at the Centre for Global Knowledge Studies (gloknos):