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Encountering Development, Arturo Escobar (1995) argues that problems of development do not exist objectively in the world, but are produced through discourse. How does discourse frame the realities and power dynamics of development schemes and interventions?

  • In response to this prompt, you will conduct a discourse analysis of one or more materials produced by a development actor.
  • Development actors can include individuals or organizations from public (government), private, or civil society sectors in the development field.
  • Materials can be from any time period and can include annual reports, websites, videos, images, etc.
  • For your chosen materials, you should identify the development “problem” being addressed. Questions or themes that your paper can address include, but are not limited to, the following:
    • How is this “problem” framed?
    • How do the materials perpetuate, or alternatively challenge or deconstruct, common discourses on development?
    • From a sociological perspective, evaluate the materials’ consideration of issues of race, gender, nationality, socioeconomic status, or other relevant dimensions.
    • From a sociological perspective, evaluate the ways in which the targeted development “problem” is (or is not) historicized or politicized.
    • What are the implications of this framing for the types of solutions that are proposed?
  • Papers should engage with at least 3-course readings, as well as lecture materials and sociological academic sources
The paper must be between 6 to 8 pages, double-spaced, Times New Roman 12 point font, with 1-inch margin s on 8.5×11 inch paper.