This book relates the success of a seemingly impossible challenge: to have a group of academics and people living in persistent poverty conduct research together. What conditions can the knowledge drawn from poverty cross with academic rigor? What type of knowledge does this collaboration result in? This is what The Merging of Knowledge presents in terms of the processes of The Fourth World-University program and the result of its five groups of work: history, family, knowledge, work and human activity, and citizenship. The results featured in this book can be appreciated on many levels. At the level of content, this unique collaboration offers knowledge from the very poor regarding their lives that is neglected or misunderstood in fields as varied as history, family sociology, work sociology, and political science. This "voice of the voiceless" is brought to the book by collaborative writing and is presented with the academics' methodological and epistemological contribution. At the level of gathering and understanding the information collected, the very poor are often given the role as "witnesses" of poverty in interviews. Here, as researchers, they contribute to rigorously examined content that illuminates their situations.
Fourth World-University Research Group is a group of community activists from very poor communities; practitioners in social change; members of the Fourth World Movement; and academics in the humanities and sciences. Training programs involving academics, professionals (from the fields of health, education, social work, etc.) and people living in poverty are initiated by Fourth World-University Research Group.
Part 1 Preface Chapter 2 General Introduction Part 3 I: History: From Shame to Pride Chapter 4 Introduction Chapter 5 The Group's Approach Chapter 6 Different Viewpoints Chapter 7 Understanding Poverty from Within Chapter 8 Turnaround Chapter 9 From the People of Poverty to the People of the Fourth World Chapter 10 Conclusion Part 11 Appendix Part 12 II: Family: The Family Plan and Time Chapter 13 Introduction Chapter 14 Approach Chapter 15 The Family Chapter 16 Time and Continuance in the Family Plan Chapter 17 Between Planning and Crisis: A division within Family Time Chapter 18 Is the Family Project a Stepping Stone to Entering Society? Chapter 19 Conclusions Part 20 Appendix Part 21 III: Knowledge: Freeing Knowledge! Chapter 22 Introduction Chapter 23 Methodological Approach Chapter 24 Academic Knowledge Chapter 25 Knowledge Gained from Life Experience Chapter 26 Knowledge Born of Action and Personal Commitment Chapter 27 Conclusion Part 28 Appendix Part 29 IV: Work and Human Activity: Hidden Talents Chapter 30 Introduction Chapter 31 Methodology Chapter 32 A Description of Some Skills Chapter 33 Skills Analysis Chapter 34 Education and Training Chapter 35 Recognition Chapter 36 Conclusion Part 37 Appendix Part 38 V: Citizenship: Representation and Extreme Poverty Chapter 39 Introduction Chapter 40 Methodology Chapter 41 Definitions of Representation Chapter 42 Means of Representation Chapter 43 Representation as a Path towards Democracy Chapter 44 Conclusion Part 45 Appendix Chapter 46 Views of the Academic Panel Chapter 47 Initial Evaluation of the Project Part 48 Appendix: The Thinking of the Poor in a Knowledge That Leads to Combat Part 49 Glossary Part 50 Bibliography (from Fourth World Movement) Part 51 Index