Master’s Project

My culminating project focuses on fast capitalism and its pedagogical implications in the academic institutions in the US. The other details about the project are as follows:

Advisor: Professor Bruce Horner

Title: Education and Fast Capitalism: Resisting the Commodification of Knowledge

Synopsis of the Project:

In this study, I have examined how education today has been facing new challenges posed by fast capitalism. I have focused attention to the customized effects of fast capitalism on education and argued that colleges and universities serve the interests of fast capitalism in their design of curricula and promotion of distributed knowledge among students. Their teaching and learning practices are also dovetailed to the needs, desires and demands of the market under the aegis of fast capitalism. It is in the process of providing distributed knowledge and services to students that the education system today is implicitly serving the interests of fast capitalism. Like in the workplaces, where fast capitalism advocates equality, shared leadership, responsibility and partnership among all the workers, academic institutions also stress distributed knowledge, claiming that it enhances  the individual growth of students by breaking the hierarchies between the institutional authorities and the students, and by allowing them more freedom. In the meantime, they are also empowering students to develop their individual expertise that is more in tandem with demands of the market than their personal growth. By the same token, education depends more on the commodification of knowledge having an exchange value with cultural capital. Moreover, expertise-based teaching learning practices are targeted only to the mainstream students whose tastes, due to their family and school environments, are akin to the skills that “tie together patterns of economic production and cultural reproduction as effectively as pedagogies based on more openly coercive practices” (Tuman, “Class” 46). My hunch is that colleges and universities are promoting niche types of education, each suited to a particular niche market of students, and thereby serving the ideology of fast capitalism, and excluding a larger number of non-mainstream students from different cultural backgrounds.

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