Destroying the university—in 5 easy steps

Posted: 29 September 2013 in Uncategorized
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The university, as I have discussed many times on this blog, is being dismantled.

The university I’m referring to is the place where critical thinking takes place, where critical ideas are produced and disseminated. And it’s that university generations of working-class students have struggled to enter, to become part of that project of critical inquiry.

But it’s becoming harder and harder for those students to acquire a decent university education, as the barriers to entry go up and the quality of the education they’re receiving is going down. We are therefore facing the destruction of the university.

Debra Leigh Scott [ht: sf] summarizes how the university is being destroyed in five basic steps:

Step I: Defund public higher education.

Step II: Deprofessionalize and impoverish the professors (and continue to create a surplus of underemployed and unemployed Ph.D.s).

Step III: Move in a managerial/administrative class that takes over governance of the university.

Step IV: Move in corporate culture and corporate money.

Step V: Destroy the students.

And there you have it: if this process if allowed to continue, the university as we have known it will be destroyed. Truth be told, the governing elite can’t allow themselves to actually eliminate the institutions of higher education entirely, because they still need to bring students and faculty together (under the command and control of corporate managers, of course) so that job-training and skills can be manufactured and sold to the highest bidder. Those of us who don’t comply, who persist with the idea of what a real university can and should be, will henceforth be forced to stand outside our lecture halls asking students to pay for the bits of insight and knowledge we can offer—$50 for a good idea, $100 for a great one or, alternatively, an article of precious clothing, a barely used knapsack, maybe a freshly baked pie.

As for the rest, it will be a university in name only—unless we do undo the five easy steps outlined above.


And, of course, there are alternatives: like the University of Mondragón [ht: fw].

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