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[Xmca-l] Re: Our Broken Economy, in One Simple Chart - The New York Times



Hello --

This message from Alfredo struck me as especially vivid and typical of teaching in higher education today. It's that moment of getting back to work in the morning and facing afresh the question, "How can I make my research useful to the human cause?" in the face of the crowd of interests, powers and constraints that condition the response to the question - that moment is familiar to so many people! Including the need to find new jobs, over and over.

Joe and I are now in Viet Nam at Ton Duc Thang University. This is the second time we've come, to teach in the Faculty of Trade Unions and Labor Relations. Like a lot of universities all over the world, it is tooling up to teach in English and become "ranked." One aspect of this is publishing. Faculty are being encouraged (you might say pressured very hard) to publish in journals on certain ranking lists. Success will be rewarded with cash (value of a couple of thousand dollars per article). This is not support for research -- it's pay for research. Joe and I are going to convene and mentor a "research group" and talk about how to get published. The enthusiasm for getting in on this bandwagon is palpable. I'm not kidding. They are highly motivated to do it. But they are not asking "How can I make my research useful to the human cause?" 

Joe and I are going to have to tool our mentoring to put Alfredo's question into the picture. 

Alfredo's snapshot of him sitting at the start of a work day is like a message from the future. I too would like to hear what the ISCAR community has to say.

Thanks -- Helena 


 
Helena Worthen
helenaworthen@gmail.com
Vietnam blog: helenaworthen.wordpress.com

On Aug 9, 2017, at 8:56 PM, Alfredo Jornet Gil wrote:

> Capitalism is incapable to carry over humanity. The other way around is another story, I guess. I do wish we could attain a true democratic (communist) society though. 
> 
> In any case, I often wonder what WE, each one of us, can do. The first thing I come up with, and not surprisingly because that's the field in which I work, is pedagogy. On the one hand, it is a contradiction, because the whole of pedagogy, as institutionalised field (I mean, as faculties, as my temporary salary, as the pursuing and achievement of publishing incentives, etc...), it wholly belongs to Capitalism. 
> 
> Yet, judging by the level of involvement and engagement that education faculties show, it seems to me that the notion of pedagogy that most faculty members hold is that our field is about learning, when in fact I think it is about generating culture. I sit every day with my freshly collected data at a small independent school and wonder, having briefly checked the discouraging world news, and I wonder:  'how can I make my research useful to the human cause?' But then I need to address journal audiences, the motives that got me the funding for my research, my temporary contract and the need to find a new job soon... and one feels pretty hopeless. I don't give up, though. It feels good having you all out there, xmca'ers,
> 
> How does, e.g., the ISCAR community stands for these matters? How does your respective faculties/institutions stand for this? 
> 
> Alfredo
> 
> ________________________________________
> From: xmca-l-bounces@mailman.ucsd.edu <xmca-l-bounces@mailman.ucsd.edu> on behalf of Ulvi İçil <ulvi.icil@gmail.com>
> Sent: 09 August 2017 14:38
> To: eXtended Mind, Culture, Activity
> Subject: [Xmca-l] Re: Our Broken Economy,       in One Simple Chart - The New York Times
> 
> Capitalism should be destroyed urgently.
> Primarily in US and China.
> Otherwise, it will destroy humanity even without wars.
> 
> I wonder if anyone is able to claim that human species can be saved by
> mechanisms belonging to capitalism which is itself the very owner of the
> current destructive mechanisms.
> 
> Like it or not, communist society is the unique exit. Capitalism is
> incapable to carry over humanity.
> 
> I do not believe communism is inevitable but I think that communism is a
> necessity to save human species. This is a scientific truth.
> 
> Otherwise, we are the final generations of our species and humanity will
> not survive after 21st century.
> 
> 
> 
> 9 Ağu 2017 15:03 tarihinde "Larry Purss" <lpscholar2@gmail.com> yazdı:
> 
>> 
>> THIS IS DRAMATIC:
>> 
>> This graph captures the depth of the crisis.
>> 
>> The 8 richest people in the world have more wealth than the bottom half of
>> the planet’s population.
>> 
>> Also...
>> Canada’s latest census also documents that for the first time single
>> occupancy residency is now the dominant form of living arrangement. Only a
>> single person in each apartment or townhouse is now the most prominent
>> living arrangement
>> 
>> 
>> 
>> 
>> 
>> Our Broken Economy, in One Simple Chart
>> This chart captures the rise in inequality better than any other chart
>> that I’ve seen.
>> 
>> 
>> https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2017/08/07/opinion/leonhardt-income-
>> inequality.html?emc=edit_mbe_20170809&nl=morning-briefing-
>> europe&nlid=69072237&te=1
>> Sent from Mail for Windows 10
>> 
>>