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Rethinking the Failed Project of Equality

Publication Date|2021-07-01

Rethinking the Failed Project of Equality
Over the past centuries, we have witnessed emerging insights and projects that attempted to
point out the origins of inequality and to free people from conditions of being enslaved,
exploited, and colonized. Efforts in pursuit of a more equal world widely emerge in many
aspects, such as popular movements, superstructure design, and technological progress.

Modern projects of equality circulated both in the forms of knowledge and practice in a
reciprocal passage between the West and the non-West. For instance, in the post-war age,
when former colonies successively pursued independence, the idea of universal emancipation
in the third world influenced people in the West to fight against global imperialism structure
as well as domestic elite groups. During the late 1960s, in the so-called global ’68
movements, students and workers in different countries protested for equal salary, women’s
rights, liberty, and democracy. Strikes and mass demonstrations inspired intellectual concerns
in specific disciplines like race, gender, labor, and post-colonialism.

The social revolution of the global ‘68 movements eventually faded out in the face of the
domination of the neo-liberalism ideology, the collapse of the Soviet Union, the endless wars
and conflicts in the Middle East, and the centralization of wealth and power around the
world. Idealish welfare systems and social justice have been somewhat achieved in some
high-income countries, however at the cost of increasing labor exploitation and
environmental pollution in offshore developing regions. Currently, the global situation is
worsening as a new wave of populism and racism towards migrants and refugees is rising

This special issue provides diverse observations on the disappointing fact that the
institutionalization of inequalities still dominates our societies. The articles in this issue
covered recent gender issues in Vietnam and South Korea, the capitalist agendas behind the
Rohingya refugees crisis, the rise of white nationalism in the US, transborder migration from
Indonesia to Taiwan and domestic migrant workers in China, the paradox of social
integration and inclusion in the Philippines, and decolonization of knowledge production in
translation from the West to the Sinophone world. With an intellectual background in
humanities, our writings follow the utopian proposition of equality advocated by research of
feminism, post-colonialism, and migration studies. Here lies the entanglement between

knowledge production and social intervention, and our question remains: Is it still possible to
pursue a world of mutual respect and universal equality?

Rethinking the Failed Project of Equality
Table of Contents

1. The #MeToo Movement and the Potential of Feminist Digital Activism Combat
Sexual Harassment in Vietnam
2. Cyber Harassment, Misogyny, and the South Korean Online Sphere
3. Transgression of Female Stereotypes and Empowerment of Women in The Third
4. The Geostrategic Location of Myanmar and its Influence on the Rohingya Conflict
5. Why has American White Nationalism been on the Rise in Recent Years?
6. Racialized Migration: Indonesian Fishers on Taiwanese Fishing Vessels
7. Freedom to Move, No Freedom to Settle: The Labor Migrancy Dilemma in
Contemporary China’s Urbanization
8. Borders and Museums: Exclusion through Social Inclusion
9. Decolonizing Knowledge: Casals’ Reception Histories in the Sinophone World
within the Global Cold Wat Context

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