Reflections on the hegemonic exclusion of critical realism from academic settings: alone in a room full of people

Cecilia De Bernardi

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Abstract

In this paper, I discuss my personal experience of the issues that can arise when adopting critical realism in academic contexts dominated by irrealist (positivist, phenomenological and post-structuralist) methodological approaches. I draw inspiration for my analysis from the concept of Gramscian hegemony and the concept of ‘authenticity’. These concepts are related because hegemonic processes prevent individuals from freely expressing themselves. In my case, academic hegemony has resulted in social pressure to sacrifice my authentic critical realist self in order to achieve academic success. I also discuss groupthink dynamics, suggesting that they are a mechanism by which hegemony – and denial of individual authenticity – can be achieved. This paper is meant to be a theoretical and reflexive discussion, which could be the starting point for empirical studies investigating the situation of a critical realist in a hegemonic academic context.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)374-389
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Critical Realism
Volume17
Issue number4
Early online date26 Jul 2018
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 8 Aug 2018
MoEC publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

Keywords

  • Hegemony
  • Gramsci
  • academia
  • authenticity
  • critical realism

Field of science

  • Philosophy

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