30 January 2013

Don't you know that magnificence is...truly reserved for the upper class?

xpost from my tumblr, itsherfactoryitsherduty.tumblr.com

(See especially 5:00)

"Why don't you get bored, go back to school
And don't ask for any of this magnificence..."

There’s this idea that students need to be trained for specific careers, and that liberal arts degrees are luxuries for those who don’t need career training.

This argument only reinforces existing relations of privilege, because it assumes that lower- and middle-class students—students who are not independently wealthy and need a job upon graduation—either cannot or will not benefit from improving their critical and creative thinking. In other words: it argues that lower- and middle-class college students should not waste their time thinking.  It implies that such students can’t think, and if they can, then they ought not to.

Thinking, then, becomes a privilege for the already overly-advantaged. This serves hegemony quite nicely, then, if we convince the 99% that it’s not in their interest to learn to think critically and creatively. If we only teach lower- and middle-class students to follow directions, not to invent new ones, then the advantages that come with, say, entrepreneurship, are reserved for already-privileged people.


  1. YES.
    i've had bell hooks screaming something very like this in my ears all the last two weeks or so.

  2. since the time of socrates, the idle elite always took it upon themselves the privilege of thinking critically. it was this section of society that had the time and the money to sit around and pontificate. this elitist idea (generalization),pervades the upper echelon of universities around the globe. and it is this type of attitude that promotes class prerogative and injustice. in a society of individuals, the group will always lose.