What are Universities Good For? A good job, or a good life?
“The university is being transformed into an organization that fits smoothly into the capitalistic, technological structure of society as a whole. There used to be a bit of an arms length structure. So that the university was indeed useful to society, but at the same time, it didn’t work exactly the same way. It had its own internal rules. What we have more recently is that the rules from outside–job training, the production of research for various technical applications, things that can be made patented–these have become concerns right within the university.” — Ian Angus
In this bonus interview from our latest episode, “The New Debt Politics,” I sat down with Ian Angus, a professor of Humanities at SFU. Ian thinks that universities have been instrumentalized. We discuss why this has happened, and what people can to change it.
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Find out more about Ian’s book, “Loving the Questions”
“What are universities good for? This question has generated intense debate, particularly since the culture wars and Allan Bloom’s “The Closing of the American Mind.” Where radicals once critiqued universities’ elitism, that argument has recently been turned on is head: many academic administrators and business leaders now see a university education as little more than job training for the information economy. Such pressures threaten universities’ ability to play the critical social role that justifies them.”
And checkout the full episode, here: