Marginalization revisited: critical, postmodern, and liberation perspectives

ANS Adv Nurs Sci. 1999 Dec;22(2):88-102. doi: 10.1097/00012272-199912000-00009.


Marginalization was advocated by Hall, Stevens, and Meleis in 1994 as a guiding concept for valuing diversity in knowledge development. Properties, risks, and resilience associated with the concept were detailed. This conceptualization of marginalization is reexamined here for its sociopolitical usefulness to nursing, from (1) critical theory, (2) postmodern, and (3) liberation philosophy perspectives. Additional properties are proposed to update the original conceptualization. These include: exteriority, Eurocentrism, constraint, economics, seduction, testimony, and hope. Effects of Eurocentric capitalism on all marginalized people are explored. Nursing implications include the need for interdisciplinary dialogue about the ethics of promoting and exporting Eurocentrism in nursing education and practice, and the need for integrated economic analyses of all aspects of life and health.

MeSH terms

  • Cultural Diversity
  • Health Services Accessibility
  • Humans
  • Minority Groups*
  • Philosophy, Nursing*
  • Social Isolation*
  • Social Values*