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category: Education
published: May 2018
ISBN:9780889775381
imprint: U of R Press

Dissident Knowledge in Higher Education

edited by Marc Spooner & James McNinch

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1 of 5
1 rating
rated!
rated!
list price: $19.99
edition:eBook
category: Education
published: May 2018
ISBN:9780889775381
imprint: U of R Press
Description

“Fueling the current onslaught on higher education is the perfect storm of neoliberalism at its apex, totalitarianism on the rise, and enduring legacies of colonialism, white supremacy, heteropatriarchy, and imperialism. Education has never been guarded from such forces, but nor has it ever been free of contestation, and higher education in particular has long perpetuated injustice even as it seeded revolutions. Such is the searing analysis and nurturing of hope offered by an all-star collection of scholars.”—Kevin Kumashiro, author of Bad Teacher!: How Blaming Teachers Distorts the Bigger Picture

“The space for dissent and democratic debate is quickly shrinking both in public life and academic institutions. This volume helps readers ask critical and conscious questions about what it means to contend for truth.”—Gloria Ladson-Billings, author of The Dreamkeepers

“This book maps the path toward a university based on ethics and justice rather than corporate needs. It reaches anyone who wants to understand the social, political, and economic trends that define our times.”—William Ayers, author of Teaching with Conscience in an Imperfect World

“[A] rich examination of the impact of corporatization of our universities, as well as how they can be reclaimed.”—James Turk, editor of Academic Freedom in Conflict

About the Authors
Marc Spooner is an associate professor in the Faculty of Education, University of Regina. He specializes in qualitative and participatory action research at the intersections of theory and action-on-the-ground. His interests include: homelessness & poverty; audit culture & the effects of neoliberalization & corporatization on higher education; social justice, activism, & participatory democracy. He has published in many venues including peer-reviewed journals, book chapters, government reports, and a wide variety of popularizations. Together with colleagues at the U of R, he also co-hosts a popular education series that takes place in pubs—not on campus—entitled Talkin’ about School and Society.
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James McNinch is an emeritus professor and the former dean of the Faculty of Education at the University of Regina. He previously served as the director of the university's Teaching and Learning Centre and prior to that was director of the Gabriel Dumont Institute, the post-secondary institution of the Métis peoples of Saskatchewan.
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Dissident Knowledge in Higher Education

Dissident Knowledge in Higher Education, edited and introduced by Marc Spooner and James McNinch and published by University of Regina Press is a highly astute evaluation of the current academic paradigm found within modern universities and educational institutions. Spooner and McNinch, both brilliant academics in their own rights, draw from an all-star cast of academics to review the historical and socioeconomic factors that have led to the neoliberal and corporate interest serving audit culture that can be observed in our post-secondary institutions today.

In the true fashion of academic literature, the thoughts and ideas that Spooner and McNinch present are supported by a nearly maddening amount of research, scholars, and peer-reviewed literature from a wide variety of sources. These sources used to support their arguments are also drawn from a range of interdisciplinary scholars and institutions, a detail that I found impressive as it was evident that this literature was written with great care in ensuring that bias was not included. The end result of this is an objective, yet shrewd and scathing critique of the educational system. It is also worth noting that this literature dedicates an entire section to Indigenous research methodologies, community-based participatory research, Traditional Knowledge, and the shifting academic climate that is beginning to rightfully perceive these modalities as legitimate, despite the lingering worldviews left behind by the colonialist foundations of academia. Not only that, but many of the authors in this book detail the lingering effects of colonialism, racism, power dynamics, and other thought-provoking and uncomfortable topics that provide the reader with the ugly context that unfortunately came with the foundations of post-secondary institutions.

The team of interdisciplinary and prestigious scholars such as Noam Chomsky, Yvonna S. Lincoln, Christopher Meyers, Marie Battiste, and many others, contribute ideas to form an absolutely essential review for anyone seeking to gain a deeper understanding of post-secondary politics, economics, and power structures. Any student, academic, professor, or person with an interest in the academic climate needs to pick up a copy of this book to save themselves from missing out on a truly thought-provoking, precise critique of academic culture.

That being said, this literature is an advanced read. Although Spooner and McNinch do an exceptional job editing and the authors avoid pedantic jargon as much as possible, the nature of academic writing does, unfortunately, require jargon to some degree. This book is incredibly well-written, intellectual, and follows scientific procedure perfectly; however, I would more strongly recommend this book to readers who are versed in reading academic literature.

In conclusion, Dissident Knowledge in Higher Education is a much-needed and refreshing examination of our post-secondary institutions and provides the reader with valuable insight on the seemingly impossible to decipher web of bureaucracy and colonialist policy that plagues the educational climate. Spooner and McNinch truly do succeed in providing the reader a window into questioning our institutions, and evaluating our scientific community as one that should strive to pursue a deeper understanding of existence and serve humanity rather than corporate interests.

THIS BOOK IS AVAILABLE AT YOUR LOCAL BOOKSTORE OR FROM WWW.SKBOOKS.COM

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