Recently, as I was searching at a publication of a main non-public airline, I felt the tremendous power of the appeal of the commodification of schooling. In reality, apart from the list of food gadgets and beverages the airline sells for the clients, the newsletter consists of fantastic advertisements of all styles of personal universities and institutes of generation and management.
What is thrilling is that each one those education centers have now not the slightest hesitation in selling their publications as a product with a tremendous fee for the company quarter. The collaboration with ‘foreign universities’, the ‘excessive rating’ as declared by using some organization or the opposite, the ‘global’ school and, certainly, the entice of ‘placement and package deal’ – the narratives of these advertisements recommend that the meaning of education has modified substantially. It appears the emergent middle elegance – guided by means of a mix of technocratic rationality and marketplace-pushed dreams – is inclined to buy this type of training.
It is at this essential juncture that the kids also are applying for admissions in liberal/public universities just like the University of Delhi and Jawaharlal Nehru University. Till now, those universities have now not given their ads in the newsletters of private airlines, or on television channels.
Somehow, this assures an old-style trainer like me; it makes me agree with that even now kids like to take admission in these places because they understand that the whole thing that is good want now not necessarily be loud, and sell itself as a packaged product. Or to place it symbolically, studying a ebook with the aid of Romila Thapar in the JNU library, or being stimulated by way of a professor at DU to investigate into the views of Andre Beteille and Amartya Sen on social inequality, has its own beauty; it isn’t always like ordering a cup of closely priced cappuccino in a non-public aircraft.
Yet, the fashion closer to the absolute marketization of training is so effective that it isn’t always smooth to overcome the anxiety about the very motive of growing up in a college. Is it possible to convince the brand new generation that there is something deep about the which means of being knowledgeable, that it is beyond ‘ability mastering’ and its intrinsic cost is immeasurable? Possibly, as instructors and college students, we are facing extensive challenges on this age – closely dominated through coaching centers, traders of ‘knowledge’ and control-precipitated rationality of ‘success’ and ‘productivity’ – to store schooling.
Seeing thru the ‘marketplace-media-control’ conspiracy
I consider we have to nevertheless try and set up the hyperlink among schooling and awareness. No, I am not speaking of saintly or religious awareness. By know-how, I imply the capacity to differentiate organic desires from the market-pushed greed, truth from propaganda, authenticity from cleverness, and internal beauty from outer packaging.
Students have a look at history and physics, biology and trade, or literature and sociology; however extra frequently than now not, bookish knowledge stays out of doors one’s inner being; there’s rarely any politico-cultural or moral churning. And as instructors, we too someway do the assigned ‘activity’, entire the syllabus, take the exam and infrequently bother approximately the bridge that must be constructed among idea and exercise, or learning and self-realization.
In fact, the strength of the ‘market-media-control’ alliance is so overwhelming that despite our college degrees, we tend to get over-excited via the propaganda machinery. The market tells us that the whole lot is a product and for this reason except your education sells, it has no value. The media enterprise bombards our minds, and ‘achievement’ is related to cash, power, and glamour. Likewise, the entire management discourse believes in ‘productivity’, ‘measurable final results’ and fancy packaging.
Somehow, we tend to accept that a Bollywood megastar is more treasured than, say, a poet; a Ph.D. in history is laughable, specifically while a motel control worker earns more than a professor; and a path in literary criticism or philosophy is a waste of time and sources, if not anything ‘efficient’ can emerge out of those ‘subjective’ states of thoughts.
Yes, the ‘market-media-management’ narrative has created self-doubt even among in any other case touchy students and teachers. And this is simply horrifying.
If the critical faculty disappears, and with low shallowness, we publish before this dominant trend, what might stay of education? Techniques triumph; know-how vanishes. Or, in spite of a degree in philosophy or political research, we might maintain to help the cult of narcissism, the aggression of ecologically destructive improvement tasks, the militarisation of the human attention, the normalization of violence in everyday lifestyles, and the close affinity of cricket, Bollywood, politics and corporate homes. This is like being trained to promote the repute quo.