Guided by modernist monologic epistemologies, the dominant approach to subaltern development espouses economic-centered interventions. Contemporary theorization of development argues that the process fundamentally operates as a discourse to depict the underserved as the site of control. Further, it unilaterally exercises structural forces and applies hegemonic logic to create, sustain, and reinforce the material and communicative marginalization. The culture-centered approach (CCA), an alternative critical communicative framework, calls for a reflexive engagement with the narratives and discourses that emerges from the lived experiences of the subalterns. Grounded in the CCA, this paper uses subaltern discourses to consider the nature and consequences of dominant development practices on the lives of indigenous subalterns of the Himalayan region of eastern India. As such, this study, on the one hand, examines how dominant development practices operate as discourse and creates conditions of marginalization in subaltern spaces. On the other hand, this analysis seeks to foreground the narratives of communicative absences, discursive violence, and subaltern negotiations in the dialogic spaces of decision-making.
- Communication for development
- Culture-centered approach
- Indigenous people
ASJC Scopus subject areas