Results 1 to 5 of 5

Thread: Is government trying to stop critical thinking?

  1. #1
    Site Caretaker Dave A's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Location
    Durban, South Africa
    Posts
    20,980
    Thanks
    3,055
    Thanked 2,463 Times in 2,068 Posts
    Blog Entries
    12

    Is government trying to stop critical thinking?

    The South African government’s policy on higher education is increasingly geared to catering for "vocational training in science and technology", said John Higgins at Think!Fest, a public discussion forum at the National Arts Festival in Grahamstown.

    Higgins’ talk, entitled Two Cultures or One World?, examined the crisis faced by the humanities the world over.

    Higgins -- an A-rated professor in English Language and Literature at the University of Cape Town -- linked this to the 1968 student protests in France, noting that European governments then did all they could to suppress freedom of thought, universities and student societies.

    Higgins said former British prime minister Margaret Thatcher launched a deliberate attack on universities, especially the humanities.

    In European conservative circles, the talk was about “rolling back 1968”. This global picture, Higgins argued, is being “copied in the policy of the South African government”.

    He said the government was increasingly redefining what a university should be and was making moves to turn universities in to vocational training colleges on the “grounds that the country can’t afford to have thinking people”.
    full story from M&G here
    So are they trying to create a docile society, or maybe they're just trying to address the skills crisis and create more employable citizens...

    I'm pretty curious as to what the members here think.
    The trouble with opportunity is it normally comes dressed up as work.

  2. #2
    Moderator IanF's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Jhb
    Posts
    2,615
    Thanks
    191
    Thanked 520 Times in 398 Posts
    Dave,
    The rot started when Kader Asmal joined the the technical colleges to Universities. But there is hope, one of my friends has a family members high up in UJ. They now insisted that the accounting department start publishing academic papers and they were not to judged on results of students passing the CA board exam. That is a step in the right direction. Then the other point he made is in SA we study at university and in England they read towards a degree.
    Only stress when you can change the outcome!

  3. #3
    Bronze Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Johannesburg
    Posts
    175
    Thanks
    7
    Thanked 88 Times in 58 Posts
    There is indeed an onslaught on critical thinking. The thrust of many of my posts on this forum was to highlight this fact!

    Despite the ridicule I have always been a proponent of independent, critical thinking. The ''stupifying" trend at universities/ colleges are continuing unabated. Dont take my word for it, ask the excellent teachers at schools who are compelled, NO coerced to water down teaching methods, to appease authorities.

    Add to the "dumbing down'' mixture, recreational (legal/illegal)drugs, violent video games and television, and you have the perfect recipe, for a future society of zombies.
    Sean Goss We all are scared, but only few are brave.
    www.sgafc.co.za

  4. #4
    Email problem
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Location
    Cape Town
    Posts
    8
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts

    Critical thnking

    How do you define a nation? By the knowledge its youth have.
    How do you control a nation? By taking the knowledge away and making puppets.

    I was for many years a primary school teacher and in that years I saw how the system was broken down from a academic to a vocational system - yes it had its pros and cons, but like in universities, everything is broken down and all difficult stuff is eliminated from the system. We're having a basic work controlled study environment. You learn a trade and that is that and when the university/school/training institution want to be better you instigate riots and protests against the person who wants better. This is academic assassination like you get economic assassination.
    Take away reasoning and knowledge and you have mindless controlled crowd - where do you start : at primary level and Universities were stage 3 of the invasion to eliminate all academical material and academics who can ask questions.
    TO know more investigate the Zeitgeist movement. Keep the knowledge, keep the truth!
    Peace out.

  5. #5
    Site Caretaker Dave A's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Location
    Durban, South Africa
    Posts
    20,980
    Thanks
    3,055
    Thanked 2,463 Times in 2,068 Posts
    Blog Entries
    12
    Looking at the comments so far, it seems at the very least we're agreed that education is producing an inferior product nowadays.
    Quote Originally Posted by IanF View Post
    Dave,
    The rot started when Kader Asmal joined the the technical colleges to Universities.
    I think the rot started with Kader Asmal full stop, although I doubt he was driven by a desire to control the nation via poor education. I suspect he was more driven by a desire to dismantle the existing structures as "legacies of apartheid" than by the notion that what he was putting in place was somehow systematically better than the old structures.

    Motive is an interesting thing. It has more influence on how people shape their world than most would care to admit. Unfortunately it's also damn hard to prove.

    When I read the story, I was reminded of a trade union leader I got to know very well when I was heavily involved with a SETA about 5 years ago. There was a point where he suddenly got this bee in his bonnet that the top ANC brass in his area were "deliberately corrupting the youth." He was desperately concerned and was starting to tug on sleeves on the issue in earnest.

    A few months later he got chucked out of the union and I haven't seen or heard of him since.

    It really was a strange business. He went from a pretty happy (although really argumentative) chappy to a haunted soul virtually overnight. I know this much - he was no fool; something really rocked his paradigm along the way.
    The trouble with opportunity is it normally comes dressed up as work.

Similar Threads

  1. [Article] Having the Government as your client
    By QUINN in forum General Business Forum
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 12-Jun-09, 08:40 PM
  2. Replies: 6
    Last Post: 24-Mar-09, 08:25 PM
  3. T Didiza: National Government Workshop on Expropriation Act
    By I Robot in forum General Business Forum
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 19-Feb-08, 07:54 AM
  4. Government to switch to open-source software
    By Dave A in forum Technology Forum
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: 23-Apr-07, 12:03 PM

Tags for this Thread

Did you like this article? Share it with your favourite social network.

Did you like this article? Share it with your favourite social network.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •