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Bhattacharyya - Theorizing Community Development

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Heather Stewart

on 13 May 2013

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Transcript of Bhattacharyya - Theorizing Community Development

Theorizing Community Development Jnanabrata Bhattacharyya “What is this quality that unites these two different understandings of community? The classic answer is solidarity (Durkheim), meaning a shared identity (derived from place, ideology, or interest) and a code for conduct or norms, both deep enough that a rupture affects the members emotionally and other ways. The decade old social capital movement conveys the same meaning: networks, trust, and mutual obligations enabling people to take collective measures to address shared problems.” Community as Solidarity “The ultimate goal of development should be human autonomy or agency – the capacity of people to order their world, the capacity to create, reproduce, change, and live according to their own meaning systems, to have the powers to define themselves as opposed to being defined by others.” Development as Agency Industrial Capitalism, Rise of the Nation State, and Instrumental Reason Historical Erosion of Solidarity and Agency Self-Help,
Felt Needs,
& Participation Three Principles “[C]ommunity development practitioners must address macro factors while working in microenvironments. Local problems today are likely to be only local manifestations of larger problems. This calls for political action, and networking among community organizations to gain political clout.” Micro-Macro Connections Public Health: “Social Antibodies”.
Violence: Neighbourhood Solidarity.
Economic Development: Micro-Credit. Food: CSA. Community Development Examples Jnanabrata Bhattacharyya defines community development not as a local sub-level of development, but as a participatory approach to development in opposition to development approaches based on top-down, pre-defined programs of “modernization” or “liberalization”. For him, community development “aims at building solidarity and agency by adhering to three practice principles, namely, self-help, felt needs, and participation.” The core debate in development studies is whether to prioritize global wealth generation  through liberalized trade versus community-led poverty alleviation through democratic accountability. What are the pros and cons of each approach, and how are they compatible/incompatible?  How has industrialization affected the meaning of community? Question 1 Question 2
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