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The Gramscian approach to understanding civil society and how this might be relevant to how the world bank works with NGOs through its lending programme - Essay Example

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The World Bank being an international financial institution with membership all over the world is keenly involved in the development process of its member countries. Its role includes project design and support both in terms of capacity building initiatives and financial…
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The Gramscian approach to understanding civil society and how this might be relevant to how the world bank works with NGOs through its lending programme
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The Gramscian approach to understanding civil society and how this might be relevant to how the world bank works with NGOs through its lending programme

Download file to see previous pages... The Civil Society Unit of the Bank is directly charged with overseeing the carrying out of the Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) and related projects. This report is compiled on behalf of the unit with the aim of shedding some light on what considerations and choices are made in conceptualizing such projects. The unit believes that whereas some of the concerns leveled at the Bank are genuine and well founded, the vast majority of them are based on lack of information on the theoretical framework of carrying out the projects (The World Bank, 2005, 4).
The main approach used by the Bank in dealing with civil society in general is grounded on the Gramscian approach originally postulated by Italian scholar Antonio Gramsci. This paper aims at shedding light on this approach so as to allay some of the criticisms that may be based on misinformation about the approach.
The post Marxist or Gramscian approach to the understanding of civil society is grounded in the works of sociology scholars Karl Marx, Georg Hegel and Gramsci. It came up in opposing response to the liberal democratic approach which was mainly propagated by philosopher Alexis de Tocqueville. Both approaches aimed at explaining the nature and role of civil society. The development of civil society dates back to Roman Empire in which it was known by the Latin term societas civilis. The term refers to the range of organizations, groupings and societies that operate outside the formal government. They include registered NGOs and more informal groupings such as pressure groups and other small movements (Mcllwaine, 2007, p 5).
According to Liberal Democratic Approach proposed by Tocqueville and others, Civil Society is a mainly autonomous sphere of liberty incorporating an organizational culture that morphs into both political and economic democracy. It is therefore a productive force and a useful ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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