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Decolonizing Cambridge University

A Participant Observer’s View

Keith Hart

When I read about the petition to ‘decolonize’ Cambridge University’s English literature syllabus, my first question was, ‘Why are they using the term for independence from empire preferred by the departing colonial powers?’ Then, ‘Why is a post

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Sarah Amsler

underpinned struggles to democratise the modern university throughout the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, and have again assumed strategic importance for reformers in the twenty-first. As Anglo-American models of the liberal and public university are

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Male University Transition Problems

A Guilt-Free Explanation

Clive Keen

It is becoming widely recognized that far fewer young males than females are entering university. Blame is directed, for example, to the school system, feminism and parenting, but the fundamental reason is not something for which anyone should be blamed; rather, it is a mathematically inevitable result of the relentless expansion of the university system. Other factors might be important, and some are very important, but they accentuate, rather than cause, the imbalance. The true root cause has to be recognized and tackled if we are to make progress concerning what is becoming a massive social problem.

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‘Being TED’

The university intellectual as globalised neoliberal consumer self

Wesley Shumar

University 2013 ). The impact on academia can be very substantial. As the New York Times reported, when Professor Amy Cuddy did her talk on ‘power poses’ it made her a superstar with speaking invitations and book contract offers – an academic’s dream come

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Two Failures of Left Internationalism

Political Mimesis at French University Counter-Summits, 2010–2011

Eli Thorkelson

“Ce monde est déjà perdu ,” this world is already lost, said a spray-painted slogan on the stained wall of an apartment building that we marched past in a protest in May 2011, in Dijon, at the end of a university counter-summit that had aimed to

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Boone W. Shear and Angelina I. Zontine

Ongoing transformations of the university - from changing working conditions to issues of affordability and access, increasing 'accountability' measures and commodification of academic production - are increasingly referred to as university corporatisation and are unfolding within and concomitant to neoliberal globalisation. In this paper we outline some of these processes as they are occurring at the University of Massachusetts Amherst and explore the limitations and possibilities of a critical response mounted by a number of students and faculty in the Department of Anthropology. Drawing on ethnographic data and interviews with group participants, as well as our own experiences with the group, we describe and assess this project as a means to investigate and respond to neoliberal governance. Through this analysis we problematise conventional discourses and imaginings of university corporatisation and neoliberalism and explore the sometimes contradictory subject positions that complicate our efforts to respond critically to university corporatisation.

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Catherine Prendergast

This article reports on the multi-year collaboration between the Ethnography of the University Initiative (EUI) at the University of Illinois and the University's Rhetoric Program, a required first-year writing course. I argue that this collaboration was successful in large part because the goals of writing programmes in American higher education settings – teaching the process of research, inviting students to see themselves as producers of knowledge and fostering collaboration between peers – are highly consonant with principles of EUI. Indeed, my own history with EUI reflects the parallel commitment of Writing Studies and the methods and goals of EUI. I suggest that EUI can serve as a powerful model for universities if they seek to place undergraduate student research writing at the core of their mission.

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Eva Bendix Petersen and Bronwyn Davies

In this article the authors take up the invitation to respond to the previous articles in the special issue. They discuss why it is so difficult to speak and write about gender and sexuality, and difference more generally, in the neoliberalised university. They make the case that the neoliberal university engages and uses categorical difference, and the individuals inhabiting these, mainly for auditing purposes. The authors develop the argument that despite the enterprise university's official commitments to diversity and inclusion, it remains indifferent to difference, understood as openness to becoming different, to differenciation in a Deleuzian sense. Difference is privatised and depoliticised and is only acceptable if it is useful and exploitable in pre-specified ways and if it conforms to and facilitates neoliberal agendas.

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Community–University Health Research Partnerships

Challenges and Concrete, Plain Language Strategies for Community Engagement in Research

Janet Page-Reeves and Lidia Regino

has also come from the people who participate in research studies who want to be involved as more than just research ‘subjects’. Community organisations, community members, and patients see potential benefits to community–university health research

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Susan Wright

This article focuses on the site where much anthropological work is conducted—universities—and anthropological approaches to studying their current transformations. Although I work comparatively on the imagining and enactment of universities in Denmark and Britain, here I focus on the recent changes to universities in England, which have taken many by surprise, as if they exceeded anyone's wildest imagination and were even beyond belief. I will trace how the “conditions of possibility” for the current changes came about—the tripling of student fees, removal of government funding for teaching in arts and social sciences, and transfer of public resources to commercial, for-profit higher education companies. I will briefly outline the problems that opponents to these moves are having in imagining an alternative future, let alone organizing themselves to contest current developments. In conclusion, I will point to the changes in anthropology itself that are incurred when engaging in an ethnography of such a large policy field and when attempting to capture “what the present is producing” (Moore 1987: 727).