TALKININKAI / CONTRIBUTORS
|UNI IS DEAD, BABY, LONG LIVE THE SELF – EDUCATION!|
|Written by Andriucha|
Along the lines of UK student movement against Higher Education Cuts (University College Falmouth incorporating Dartington College of Arts is in Cornwall, UK, and is facing a complete cut of public funding in the near future (one among the many Universities/Colleges teaching Humanities). All the main action is obviously in the bigger cities east from Cornwall. There has been recent occupations of University buildings, Headquarters of the Conservative Party and, even, banks. The last one is particularly interesting - University of Strategic Optimism http://videos.wittysparks.com/id/2454018622
The illusion of higher education institutions being some kind of autonomous venues for free and critical enquiry is contemptible. So often exploitation is recognized in the actions of state and private capitalists, but authoritarian relationships & ideological propaganda at educational institutions are regarded as freedom, which (sadly) becomes more and more commercialised. We have no illusion: Dartington ‘died’ way before moving to Falmouth – the landowners could not sustain this dream neither financially nor ideologically. The ruling class doesn’t need a generation of critical and creative thinkers, such generation would not need any ruler.
Contra ‘common-sense’, we understand that the purpose of the university is to train us for work. This is sometimes referred to as an investment in ‘human capital’ – in other words, as a result of developing new skills and new ideas, we are considered as more ‘effective’ or ‘creative’ individuals. Our increased capacities are highly valued by employers, who understand that we are able to work more efficiently or more ingeniously, therefore producing an ever increasing amount of profit in return for the wages they ‘invest’ in us. So the logic goes – the better educated we are, the more ‘ideas’ we come up with, the more effectively we can produce profit for our employers.
There is no question that our time at university has the potential to lead us to being more creative or effective – to finally realize that we do NOT need tutors or university to help us stop working. However as it currently stands, we are having to finance our own education so that someone else can make money from it! As a result, that ‘£25,000’ debt is like a huge wage cut, offset onto our future earnings. Or to look at it another way, every one of us that goes to university is subsidizing the (increased!) profits of our future bosses to the tune of £25,000!
We are standing in solidarity with all the protesting students and staff. Though we see a problem of all this energy being exploited by authoritarian pseudo-socialists in order to reform capitalism in their favour. Our aim is not to defend institutions (though public libraries, for example, are extremely important) but to use this situation in order to practise self-organization, which is (and will be) vital in a humane society. We don’t need no education, we know which way the wind blows…