Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Post-Fordist Education

'Pedagogy of Human Capital': Stewart Martin on the post-Fordist crisis of progressive education.
Post-Fordism’s appetite for self-directed activity is bringing about a crisis in progressive education. No longer perceived as threatening, a work force trained to think for itself has become highly desirable. So what should an emancipatory education entail today?
I tried to get at this question from the opposite side in "Rethinking Domination and Resistance,
where I argued that the worries about the oppression of progressive forms of education are problems for people who don't really have problems. People who are more overtly oppressed don't have any doubts about whether it is happening or not.

As I've said, I think emancipatory education must involve teaching skills that actually generate collective power, which progressive education does not.


Anonymous said...

So what skills generate collective power and how do you teach them, and how do you teach them in a way that avoids indoctrinating students in your own values and agenda?

rg said...

You assume that the other ways we teach do not socialize students to a particular way of thinking and interacting with the world. Teacher directed learning socializes students. Open classrooms are socializing. Eating around the family dinner table is also a socializing learning experience.

The fault of later interpretations of progressive education is that they disconnect the learning of the individual from its larger social setting. Dewey, arguably a founder of progressive education, talked about the need to reach individual minds so that those individuals can engage in civic life. And civic life, until the attacks of post-Fordism and neoliberalism, was communal (more or less).

But that's just my take.

Robert Thompson said...

It's been really helpful to walk through this education site.

Muazzam Mehmood
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The Media Annexes said...

Sounds like good opinion!

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