eurocentrism. A term describing the way a particular cultural model, 'centred' upon European intellectual traditions and socio-political systems, has been generalized so as to apply to the world at large. The bias in this geocultural and largely, white, male perspective upon human history and world affairs has been especially exposed in postcolonial studies. Other contemporary critical theories have contributed to this decentring critique, but have not themselves been exempt from perpetuating some aspect of euro- or ethnocentrism. Thus Anglo-American and French feminism of the 1970s and 1980s, while they significantly diverged on other topics, consistently ignored the conditions and claims of African-American women and Third World women of colour. Deconstruction and postmodern theory also, while profoundly critical of the assumptions of Western philosophy and of modernity, remain in many ways the product of Western cultures and sensibilities.
It might be said that this is true also of Western postcolonial theory. Homi Bhabha responds directly to the charge 'that the place of the academic critic is inevitably within the Eurocentric archives of an imperialist or neo-colonial West' (1994: 19). He proposes theorizing the concepts of negotiation and cultural difference as a way of moving beyond the divisive polarities of theory and activism, centre and periphery, self and other on which Eurocentricism is founded. [from Brooker, 1999]