Gender Theory as Southern Theory

  • Pallavi BanerjeeEmail author
  • Raewyn Connell
Part of the Handbooks of Sociology and Social Research book series (HSSR)


This chapter explores the global connections to theorising gender. The chapter argues that the global north clearly maintains hegemony in the production of gender and feminist theory in the world. The theories produced in the global south are generally oriented to theories and methods developed in the global north. There is a rich but unacknowledged archive of accounts and analyses of gender from around the global south. A survey of gender scholarship in the global south shows important foundation for decolonial thinking about gender theory. We contend that gender needs to be understood in a historical context of the majority world including colonization, colonial violence, role of the postcolonial state, land acquisition, global hunger and post-independence globalization. Feminism in the north as well feminism around the global south stands to gain from the vision of a wider world. Gender scholarship, therefore, needs to move to a world-centered, solidarity-based approach to knowledge.


Southern theory Feminist epistemology Postcolonial Global gender 



This text draws from the authors’ previous work, especially Pallavi Banerjee’s doctoral thesis Constructing Dependence: Visa Regimes and Gendered Migration in Families of Indian Professional Workers, and Raewyn Connell’s papers ‘Margin becoming centre: for a world-centred rethinking of masculinities.’ NORMA: International Journal for Masculinity Studies, 2014, 9:4, 217–231, and ‘Meeting at the edge of fear: Theory on a world scale,’ Feminist Theory, 2015, 16:149–166.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of CalgaryCalgaryCanada
  2. 2.University of SydneySydneyAustralia

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