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The global massification of higher education and the increasing commodification of knowledge compel us to fundamentally rethink, not only the identity of the contemporary university, but also the student/lecturer relationship.
How do we conceive this relationship at a time marked by globalisation and the relative decline of the nation-state? Historically, teaching and research derived their meaning from the intimate connection between the university and the nation-state project.
The decline of the latter qua imagined community has radical implications for those who work and study at university.
This study focuses specifically on the consequences of these changes for the authority of lecturers and the ethical parameters of their relationship with students.
The analysis suggests, firstly, that a deconstructive pedagogy may enable lecturers to re-appropriate the idea of education towards justice (even at a time marked by the declining importance of the nation-state as embodiment of such a society) and secondly, that the pre-modern trope of master/ apprentice may be a useful way of re-thinking authority in a way that is wholly immanent to the learning encounter itself.
The book is addressed to lecturers in higher education with an interest in the philosophy of education.
Senior Lecturer in the Department of Political and International Studies, Rhodes University, South Africa.
Field of research: African Philosophy, with specific focus on violence in post-colonial Africa, as well as the politics of higher education.
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