#113 Revolutionizing & Radicalzing Poverty Definitions – SSSP session finalized

Session sponsor: poverty, class, and inequality
Session organizers: Elaine Laberge, University of Victoria (Canada) | Annette M Mackay, West Virginia University (USA)

Around the world, nations are ravaged by capitalism, neoliberalism, ever-evolving —isms. In colonized nations, stratification ladders are forged with the iron will of colonial and capitalist beliefs and practices. We are in a moment where sociologists are vital to do something about the masses in poverty and those being thrown into poverty. Sociologists need to do something about the ever-widening underclass.

After decades of research on poverty little has changed. No one can agree on how to define poverty within sociology and across disciplines. Understandings poverty and poverty-based research is American-centric and largely from the Global North. Thus, mainstream definitions of poverty (e.g., based on economics) are deeply embedded in colonial notions of “poverty.” As such, this is how poverty is researched, understood and poverty issues are addressed.

Definition in-fighting aside, what is more central is the massive neglected, excluded and marginalised knowledges and voices that understand poverty through a decolonial lens. This session seeks to learn from these voices on how they are tackling the structural reasons for poverty. How do marginalised activist researchers, teachers, students and communities understand and define poverty? How might they be actively engaged in dismantling oppression to stop the echoes of poverty across generations through how poverty is understood and defined? How might those in the margins create shifts in mainstream understandings of and definitions of poverty? How might we define poverty from a place that honours ancestral knowledge, lived experiences and poverty-class cultures?

Presenters are encouraged to use diverse forms of knowledge sharing (e.g., story, poetry, traditional academic, bricolage) to engage attendees in revolutionizing and radicalizing poverty definitions.

Submit a maximum 100-word abstract written in plain language and a bio.

The Society for the Study of Social Problems
71st virtual annual meeting
August 6-8, 2021

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