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Fighting Academic Repression and Neoliberal Education

Resistance, Reclaiming, Organizing, and Black Lives Matter in Education

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Edited By Anthony J. Nocella and Erik Juergensmeyer

Fighting Academic Repression and Neoliberal Education is a cutting-edge investigation of the alarming state of education today. This practical how-to handbook gives readers tactics and strategies to organize and challenge forces that threaten liberatory critical education. Drawn from scholars and activists from across the world, the fifteen chapters guide readers through a strategic method of understanding the academic industrial complex and corporate education in the twenty-first century. Education is being hijacked by banks and corporations that are tearing apart the foundational fabric of academic freedom, resulting in mass standardized education and debt for all students and furthering racial inequity. This is a must-read for anyone interested in democracy, education, social justice, critical pedagogy, and Black Lives Matter.

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Foreword: Remembering the Future? (Ward Churchill)

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Foreword

Remembering the Future?

WARD CHURCHILL

 

In 1963, acclaimed liberal administrator Clark Kerr, then-president of the University of California (U/Cal) system, published a revealing little book titled The Uses of the University. Therein, he likened such institutions to “knowledge factories” designed to function in a manner serving specific social and political purposes. In essence, Kerr explained, they were facilities owned by the State together with its corporate partners, run by executive hirelings like himself who, with the assistance of a managerial staff, coordinated a nonunionized workforce consisting of a faculty guild and supporting personnel whose collective task was, at defined intervals, to have completed the processing of raw material into particular types, numbers, and qualities of products desired by the owners. The latter were adjusted from time to time in correspondence to the owners’ perception of their needs, and workforce composition altered accordingly, but, while subject to quantitative variables, the nature of the raw material remained constant.

The “raw material” in Kerr’s remarkably candid rendering was of course students, figuratively arriving at the factory in the form of the crude ores from which over a four-year period, allowing for a certain amount of “wastage” along the way, the workforce would smelt, mold, and otherwise shape into the quota of graduates certifiably imbued with “threshold” levels of proficiency in the fields State/corporate planners deemed necessary to meet the demand for a “qualified” base of entry-level...

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