We’ve lived so long under the spell of hierarchy—from god-kings to feudal lords to party bosses—that only recently have we awakened to see not only that “regular” citizens have the capacity for self-governance, but that without their engagement our huge global crises cannot be addressed. The changes needed for human society simply to survive, let alone thrive, are so profound that the only way we will move toward them is if we ourselves, regular citizens, feel meaningful ownership of solutions through direct engagement. Our problems are too big, interrelated, and pervasive to yield to directives from on high.
—Frances Moore Lappé, excerpt from Time for Progressives to Grow Up

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

"The Lost Soul of Higher Education: Corporatization, the Assault on Academic Freedom and the End of the American University"

from Truthout. A review of a book authored by Ellen Schrecker, a history professor at New York City's Yeshiva University.
"In reacting to the economic insecurities of the past forty years, the nation's colleges and universities have adopted corporate practices that degrade undergraduate instruction, marginalize faculty members, and threaten the very mission of the academy as an institution devoted to the common good."
In my opinion, one should enter higher education with the knowledge that it has a strong component of pro-capitalist indoctrination built into it. You won't get any kind of accurate picture of labor history and any history that undermines the legitimacy of capitalist interests and rule. Hence, its value lies mostly in teaching technological skills.