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Abstract

The so-called Global South occupies a rather peripheral position in German-language sociology. This owes itself mainly to an idea, dating back to the early days of sociology, that upholds the binary between modern and traditional societies, with sociology being the field in charge of analyzing the supposedly modern and diversified societies that are to be found in the Global North. With the rise of debates on globalization, development sociology, the only subdiscipline that had been concerned with the other parts of the world, experienced a rather paradoxical decline. This article shows how sociological contributions that acknowledge the complexity of the Global South and attribute agency to social actors who are otherwise often socially marginalized on a global scale have provided novel and important perspectives on these regions over the last fifteen years. These contributions also testify to how these perspectives are compatible with theoretical and methodological insights from development sociology and have advanced classical approaches by relating them to the effort to create a global, decolonized sociology. The aim of such a sociology is to reinstate a more critical and encompassing analytical perspective towards the Global South that overcomes Eurocentric and modernist views.

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