Discourses of the North Atlantic: Epistemology and Hegemony
The premise of this presentation rests on the assertion sociological studies of language—in all of their variations—have uniquely important contributions to make to social research at this historical moment. With relationality as an ontological premise, sociological studies of language demand that we pursue knowledge about the social world by examining social routes to knowledge. Of particular relevance here, is the capacity to examine the historicity of localized contexts, the technological mediation of culture, the production of absence, and the subjective processes of social research. Studies of language offer an effective means for apprehending relationality by linking together analyses of structure and agency, history and local interaction.
Studies of language have an uneven presence in Sociology that dates back to Gramsci. They surface most clearly in debates about the politics of knowledge production—as they did for Gramsci. As we abandon notions of epistemic innocence, studies of language offer opportunities to deconstruct the colonaliality of North Atlantic epistemologies that occupy contemporary geographies of knowledge production.