America on the Edge — Politics, Culture, Education

28 02 2007

America on the Edge: Henry Giroux on Politics, Culture, and Education
reviewed by H. Svi Shapiro — January 29, 2007

“Giroux . . .has, I believe, correctly argued that we face today two
kinds of fundamentalism, each of which threaten democratic life.. .Such intolerance quickly becomes a license to suppress violently anything that appears to deviate or challenge the one right doctrine.

While education is considered in this book as just one part of his
larger analysis, he leaves us in no doubt as to its crucial
responsibility in breaking through the distortions, deceit, and
mystifications that pervade the dominant culture. . .”

(JJ’s note – and don’t miss how he ties in university sell-outs to child
beauty pageants!!)

Teachers College Record, Date Published: January
29, 2007
http://www.tcrecord.org ID Number: 12938

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3 responses

28 02 2007
misedjj

“Giroux’s argument, however, goes beyond discussing the disgusting and dangerous abuse and exploitation of female sexuality that is described here, or in the hollowing out of some more expansive view of education. . .

The mentality of the marketplace is one that privileges self-promotion over the democratic concern with the wellbeing of the whole. . .

Self-interest eclipses social relationships, and self-sufficiency replaces social interdependence. Freedom in the market-dominated society becomes defined as the capacity to choose among a proliferation of goods rather than the opportunity to shape, with our fellow human beings, the world we wish to live in.

And the goals of the market-driven society are always materialistic and about appearance; it is a culture of money, possessions, celebrity, sexiness, and glamour.

Ultimately in this kind of world it is not just goods and services that are up for sale: it is ourselves who are more and more on the auction block, as we learn how to manipulate perceptions and sell ourselves to others.”

28 02 2007
misedjj

I never consciously thought of public school curriculum quite that way, as “learning how to manipulate perceptions and sell ourselves to others” — but going over it in my mind, that’s what the whole accountability movement was about at bottom, wasn’t it? Product quality controls, testing and voc ed emphasis and resume building and “discipline of hard work” training, the better to sell ourselves in the marketplace and get a quantifiable return on our tax investment, hmmm . . .

24 08 2007
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