Friday, September 5, 2014

#highered news as contemporary intellectual history—Meranze's Latest

re-posted from Remaking the University. Back when Michael Meranze (history, UCLA) blogged a weekly links post, I often reblogged it. He still blogs regularly, but Latest Links is now a feature on the sidebar with no rss feed. Links encompass the education spectrum but from a California perspective, welcome and sometimes short in national higher ed coverage. 

PS Don't miss his latest, "The New Brutalism in Higher Ed" (9/4/14), building on LRB editor Marina Warners' Diary column in London Review of Books. Read both. Meranze, master of the killer close, brings the "new brutalism" of UK higher ed back to our own shores:
Warner began her account by describing the visit of a friend from California who noticed that the library (from the 1960s) had been built in the style of the "new brutalism" (Think of most old UC or CSU buildings). But as Warner herself notes, "new brutalism in academia was taking on another meaning."  Although it has happened with ruthless ideological will in England, it is not an alien story to the US.  Indeed, what has happened over the last few years under David Cameron is really just a fast-forward version of what has been going on in the US more slowly and in less centralized fashion. We are in the midst of our own new brutalism.  Although not as centrally directed we have been witnessing it for years: the recent intrusions by governing boards at the Universities of Illinois, Kansas, and Virginia; the shuttering of small language departments; the dramatic rise in tuition at public universities; increasing student/faculty ratios; ever growing reliance on adjuncts; cuts in Federal support for scholarly research; and our own, albeit less developed, auditing system.  In England, the transition occurred with such speed as to catch most people off-guard (despite the efforts of individuals like Stefan ColliniAndrew McGettigan, or the Campaign for the Public University).  But we have no excuse.This is the time to master the details to be able to oppose the systems being put into place on campuses across the country. [emphasis added]

Michael Meranze's Latest Links

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