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Editorial policy and scientific controversies in Agrarian Studies

ABSTRACT

Situations demonstrate interests and power relations in evaluation of papers in scientific controversies in editorial process in journals. We argue the role of journal editors is fundamental to understanding editorial policy in situations of opening and closing controversies. The article analyzes how editorial policies interfere with scientific controversies. The controversy analyzed is the dispute over the role of the peasantry in the agrarian question, debate guided by different assumptions, carried out mainly in the Marxist research program. The research corpus consisted of articles, editorials, books and book reviews published in three international journals of Agrarian Studies: The Journal of Peasant Studies, Journal of Agrarian Change and Agrarian South: Journal of Political Economy, and semi-structured interviews with editors. Contents, recurrence of themes and the performance of editors in the editorial process were analyzed. Different ways of action by editors operate to omit or highlight positions in the controversy, guiding to the closure or continuity of the debate.

Keywords:
epistemic hierarchies; scientific controversies; editorial policy; scientific journals; agrarian question


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