Go back to previous topic
Forum nameOkay Activist Archives
Topic subjectBut surely this is a tick of the university system...
Topic URLhttp://board.okayplayer.com/okp.php?az=show_topic&forum=22&topic_id=30834&mesg_id=30861
30861, But surely this is a tick of the university system...
Posted by moot_point, Wed May-11-05 06:52 AM
>"The difficulty of imagining one's own end forces many white
>liberal educators who want to invoke the end of oppression to
>embrace a progressive methodology but not the leading ideas
>that may make their own end a concrete reality. For this
>reason, many white educators who deal with "at risk"
>populations willfully adopt a benevolent methodology but often
>refuse to engage the theories that inform it."

which extends beyond the study of race. What gives the middle class professor authority to theorise on the proletariat, the male professor authority to comment on feminism, the English professor a license to critically discuss foreign cultures?

There is a privilege in our universities of 'objectivity' (that is peculiar both to the arts and the sciences) but I believe this notion to be somewhat fallacious. All critical writing is subject to/mediated by the musings of its author.

So what's the solution? Should the criteria by which we judge the validity of opinion be based in part (or even full) on a thinker's background?

>He goes on the write about "colonists" (or the descendents of
>colonists) and liberal educators who "shield themselves from
>self-critical reflection that could interrogate, among other
>things, how the maintenance of their privilege invariably
>makes them complicit with the dominant ideology" that
>maintains the status quo.
>I once had the opportunity to discuss a similar topic with the
>dean of the art history department at my alma mater. Black
>history existed in the margins of the "canon" or principles
>generally established as valid and fundamental in the history
>curriculum. One-on-one he was willing to admit that this was
>wrong but that, in his position, he felt compelled to support
>the "fundamentals" that did not include a equal focus on Black
>history and culture....

With respect, I'm not sure if what's written above automatically qualifies what's written below. Notwithstanding an apparent agenda, of which I am aware, surely all syllabi have a limited scope for 'teaching' by virtue of time contraints..?

this means the experts really aren't
>experts and the teachers really aren't teachers.