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Bullshit Towers

Neoliberalism and Managerialism in Universities

Margaret Sims

This book explores the impact of neoliberal managerialism, framed by the language of bullshit, on higher education in Australia. The book explores the figured world of management, leadership and followership in seeking to understand the changes that have shaped a sector characterised by unacceptably high rates of bullying, disrespect, lack of trust, micromanagement and poor health and wellbeing. In a world context where post-truth rules, the role of the higher education sector in creating citizens unable (or unwilling) to deconstruct the post-truths to which they are exposed is foregrounded. Quality education, increasingly defined as that which transmits the values and ‘truths’ of the privileged, has become a tool designed to create a compliant neoliberal citizenship willing to accept their allocated status in life. Critical thinking is discouraged despite bullshit words that parody its importance. University staff are de-professionalised, disrespected and disregarded and managers increasingly define themselves as ‘the university.’ Democracy is dead. Do we join the chorus shouting "long live the autocracy" or do we fight?

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Teacher TV

Seventy Years of Teachers on Television, Second Edition


Mary M. Dalton and Laura R. Linder

Teacher TV: Seventy Years of Teachers on Television, Second Edition examines some of the most influential teacher characters presented on television from the earliest sitcoms to contemporary dramas and comedies. Both topical and chronological, the book follows a general course across decades and focuses on dominant themes and representations. Although each chapter presents an overview of the all the teachers on television for each decade, the focus will link some of the most popular shows of the era to larger cultural themes. "1950s Gender Wars: Our Miss Brooks and Mr. Peepers" looks at acceptable behavior for men teachers and women teachers on television and offers a context for making links to how gender is socially constructed in popular culture and in society. The racial tensions of the 1960s take a more implicit form on two series and are examined in "1960s Race and Social Relevancy: The Bill Cosby Show and Room 222." In "1970s Ideology and Social Class: Welcome Back Kotter and The Paper Chase," both lower and upper ends of the class spectrum are blunted in favor of storylines that are personal and predictable instead of overtly political. Two popular television sitcoms validate educational privileges for elite students in "1980s Normalizing Meritocracy: The Facts of Life and Head of the Class." The 1980s reflect a return to conservatism, and two popular television sitcoms mark the transition by validating educational privileges for elite students. The 1990s mark a time of significant change for teachers on television. In "Gaining Ground From Margin to Center: Hangin’ With Mr. Cooper and My So Called Life," the two featured shows, illustrate the mundane and the provocative in teacher depictions on television. In "Embracing Multiculturalism: Boston Public and The Wire" we use these dramas as exemplars of the 2000s to examine themes such as race, gender, and sexuality, but view them through a new lens. Chapter Eight is new to this edition and looks at the downward spiral in the depiction of educators in popular culture during 2010s and pays specific attention to Madam Secretary and Teachers. The Afterword, which is also new, explores these television texts in the larger socio-political context and makes important links between television narratives and issues of identity, the culture of testing, poverty, and dropping out. We must reestablish the importance of public education and consider its essential role in creating an informed citizenry, which is necessary for the future of democracy. Recent trends represent a dangerously skewed view of educators, and it is essential that we begin to "flip the script"—literally and figurative—to combat the cynicism of today's television narratives and stop the way those stories influence public perceptions of education in America. 

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La tête et le texte

Formation initiale des enseignants primaires en didactique de la lecture et de l’écriture


Edited by Anne-Claire Blanc and Vincent Capt

La formation des étudiants à l’enseignement primaire de la lecture et de l’écriture ne peut séparer les approches cognitives des approches linguistiques et littéraires, suivant la position de Dominique Bétrix, à qui ce volume rend hommage.
L’accent est mis sur la convocation de certains savoirs théoriques, sur la présentation de dispositifs didactiques éprouvés, ainsi que sur la description de situations de formation et celle de gestes professionnels à acquérir.
Unir la tê te et le texte en situation de formation initiale au lire-é crire, c’est ouvrir à une perspective professionnelle soucieuse de la vie mê me de la litté racie en contexte scolaire.

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Edited by Daniel White Hodge, Don C. Sawyer III, Anthony J. Nocella II and Ahmad R. Washington

Hip-Hop and Dismantling the School-to-Prison Pipeline was created for K–12 students in hopes that they find tangible strategies for creating affirming communities where students, parents, advocates and community members collaborate to compose liberating and just frameworks that effectively define the school-to-prison pipeline and identify the nefarious ways it adversely affects their lives. This book is for educators, activists, community organizers, teachers, scholars, politicians, and administrators who we hope will join us in challenging the predominant preconceived notion held by many educators that Hip-Hop has no redeemable value. Lastly, the authors/editors argue against the understanding of Hip-Hop studies as primarily an academic endeavor situated solely in the academy. They understand the fact that people on streets, blocks, avenues, have been living and theorizing about Hip-Hop since its inception. This important critical book is an honest, thorough, powerful, and robust examination of the ingenious and inventive ways people who have an allegiance to Hip-Hop work tirelessly, in various capacities, to dismantle the school-to-prison pipeline.

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Mairi McDermott

Mapping the Terrains of Student Voice Pedagogies is an autoethnography of McDermott’s experiences with student voice reforms. Ultimately, the author is concerned with better understanding the possibilities for student voice as a transformative teaching and learning practice within the context of neoliberal education. The discussion is anchored in two past student voice projects in which McDermott was involved, one as a researcher and one as a facilitator. As method, the author revisits these experiences through memory and various artifacts to unpack embodied voices of difference. More specifically, McDermott is concerned with how teachers take up student voice in their pedagogies, how teachers come to understand themselves and their students in terms of student voice, and how social differences contour student voice pedagogies. The author queries: How do experiences with student voice inform teacher <-- --> student relationships? And, how are student voice practices shaped, organized, and inscribed through social difference? Grounding this inquiry is post-structural feminist anti-racism as an interwoven discursive orientation and politics for troubling and transforming schooling and education. Analyses address how McDermott’s presence as an individual and as a member of socio-historical groups in the student voice initiatives affected the projects’ dynamics. The findings amplify the necessity of time and space for educators to critically reflect on their practices when implementing reforms, time and space that were provided by engaging autoethnography. The book contributes important strategic processes towards realizing the necessary goals of critical reflexive practices in teaching and learning, addressing the question of ‘how’ one might do critical reflection through autoethnography.

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Teaching and Race

How to Survive, Manage, and Even Encourage Race Talk


Irene Murphy Lietz

Teaching and Race: How To Survive, Manage, and Even Encourage Race Talk provides an in-depth interdisciplinary analysis of some common student talk about race, its flavor, character, rhetorical, sociological, psychological and educational development sources, and manageable tools for responding to students. The book recommends an accessible two-step, compassionate listening followed by critical challenges, to make the transformative connection between emotion and evidence. The book helps teachers embrace the moments of difficult conversation, confront student denial (as well as their own), and take advantage of the unique opportunity the classroom provides to advance the students’ anti-racist identity development. Teaching and Race narrates common, sometimes offensive, language in four student interviews that are tied to strong feelings of confusion, denial, guilt, resistance and more. The student interviews help college teachers name and analyze loaded racial discussion so that they can thoughtfully address it in the classroom, rather than feel their only choices are explosive confrontation, gloss-overs or redirection. The book empowers teachers to shift potentially confrontational race talk to open-minded race dialogues that ultimately defuse the shock, sting, alarm and confusion of race talk by well-intentioned but unpracticed voices. The book creates a compassionate but informed moment for teachers, preparing them to confidently raise a critical challenge to misinformation at the moment it arises, and providing a beginning response for the teacher.

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Briefwechsel zwischen einem jungen österreichischen Dichter und einer schwedischen Philosophin und Gesellschaftsreformerin

Margrit Hansen

Im Jahre 1904 schreibt der junge Stefan Zweig zum ersten Mal an die von ihm verehrte Schwedin Ellen Key. Sie ist über 50, Zweig ist 23 Jahre alt. Es entwickelt sich ein fast 20 Jahre dauernder, vertrauensvoller Briefwechsel.

In diesen Briefen spiegelt sich zunächst die Entwicklung des jungen Dichters wider, später vor allem ungläubiges Entsetzen, als die kulturell verbundenen Menschen und Nationen Europas mit Ausbruch des Ersten Weltkrieges zu Feinden werden.

Ab 1915 wird in der Korrespondenz zwischen Zweig und Key deutlich, dass Resignation an Raum gewinnt. Der Krieg als humanitäre Katastrophe und Verbrechen gegen die Menschlichkeit lässt den Glauben an die Kraft von Literatur und Kunst schwinden.

Beide kämpfen aber weiter mit der Schreibfeder für den Frieden und warnen in Wort und Schrift vor Radikalisierung. Sie hoffen weiter, dass ein menschliches Gewissen mittels Sprache nachhaltig angerührt werden kann.

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Edited by Joris Thievenaz, Jean-Marie Barbier and Frédéric Saussez

Lorsque la recherche se donne des objets d’étude correspondant à des activités humaines, comme c'est le cas en éducation et formation, elle est de fait confrontée au défi qui consiste à rendre compte du réel et à agir sur lui. Cette question intéresse toutes les sciences humaines et sociales (SHS) qui ont pour objet le travail que la société fait sur elle-même pour se maintenir/se transformer. Comment rendre compte des rapports entre activités de compréhension et de transformation du monde, qui traversent et structurent la recherche, sans les enfermer dans des rapports d’opposition ou de disjonction ? Comment cette tension se manifeste-t-elle et comment est-il possible au chercheur de s’en emparer et de se positionner vis-à-vis d’elle ? Cet ouvrage propose d’apporter un nouvel éclairage à cette question à la fois épistémologique, théorique et méthodologique, en réunissant diverses contributions ayant en commun d’interroger les rapports de continuité entre comprendre et transformer. Il est pour cela organisé en trois parties.

La première concerne l'analyse des activités. Elle interroge dans quelle mesure il est possible de transformer les outils traditionnellement mobilisés en outils d'approche de l'activité comme transformation et en transformation. La deuxième a trait aux rapports en-acte qu'entretiennent la formation/accompagnement et la recherche : elle concerne toutes les situations de recouvrement entre champs de recherche, champs de pratiques, et champs de formation. La troisième a trait à l'organisation sociale de l'enseignement supérieur au regard de l'opposition comprendre/transformer ; elle concerne la structuration d'un champ disciplinaire particulièrement porteur de ces enjeux : le champ des sciences de l’éducation.

Cet ouvrage collectif se présente ainsi comme une invitation à d’autres explorations d’une question qui dépasse singulièrement le périmètre de l’éducation et qui concerne plus largement cultures de pensée et cultures d’action.

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Edited by Aaron D. Knochel, Christine Liao and Ryan M. Patton

This book integrates the three fields critical theory, digital art making, and pedagogy, drawing from scholarship and practices of new media, social practice and community-based arts interventions, and arts education pedagogy. With a collection of essays from an international group of authors, we guide readers through steps artists and art educators use to explore digital media, using new media art making to enable voices and interrupt power structures. The three sections of formation, co-construction, and intervention through critical digital practice, provide a survey of current research in new media art pedagogy and social practice. The first section explores interaction techniques, sound technology, 3D printing, pedagogy as sociomaterial, and data visualization as forms of critical digital media. The second section demonstrates examples of social media as means to engage communities and digital art making to critically investigate citizenship, local and international issues, and bring together intergenerational conversation. The last section offers examples of new media art practices addressing the sociopolitical status quo to empower socially disadvantaged and relegated groups of people.

Our collection offers an important survey to university new media art and social practice courses to show the range of ways media arts technology can be used in art practice.

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Educing Ivan Illich

Reform, Contingency and Disestablishment


John Baldacchino

More than a book about Illich, this is a conversation with Illich’s work as we enter the third decade of the 21st century, just under twenty years after his passing, and almost fifty years since his Deschooling Society was first published. As Illich is beatified and demonised in equal measure, Educing Ivan Illich chooses to focus on the relationship between reform, contingency and disestablishment. As reform stands for a plurality of reiterations that seek effective forms of accordance, in our recognition of contingency we freely claim that even as we might recognize the presence of universality in how everything appears on a shared horizon, we are not denied the existence and dynamic reality of plural possibilities in their inherent contradictions. In this bargain of synchronicity, we find that disestablishing the reified universe by which we have, for so long, traded, staked and even lost our freedom and intelligence, is not just a desire but it becomes a must. Unlike other commentators of Illich’s work, Baldacchino argues that what is radical about Illich is not a freestanding concept of deschooling but in how, in disestablishing social life, he exits the walls of the polis by upholding tradition as a disruptive force. In such light Illich’s work is read in what remains overdue. Odd though it may sound, this is an urgent need for anyone interested in Illich’s unique and irreplaceable contribution. To that end, Educing Ivan Illich has far more to offer than is usually expected from a commentary on someone else’s work.