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CAS Initiative-David Blacker
September 25, 2017 @ 4:00 PM – 4:00 PM
Levis Faculty Center-Room 210; 919 West Illinois Street; Urbana
The Educational Needs of Erstwhile Humans: Identity Fluidity in a Post-Work World Modern state-provisioned education is based upon a moral premise of individuals’ serviceability. There is nothing inherently cynical about this premise. Yes there is the development of exploitable labor value in the Marxist sense, but there is also the potential for unfolding human capacity and talent. Yes, we are each assigned exchange values by capital (often via education credentials), but because of education’s inherent over-determination we are also rendered unpredictable and not reducible to our economic value-addedness. My literateness, for example, may render me functional as a corporate record keeper yet it also may activate a latent internal capacity for critique and creativity. Yet unprecedented levels of automation are ending this longstanding educational arrangement. As fewer and fewer of us are needed for the production capitalist value, the longstanding rationale for public educational expenditure grows less and less compelling. This specter of uselessness and disposability is having deeper and more lasting effects on our self-understanding than is often realized and it pushes us beyond business-as-usual fine-tuning. Our industrial educational system’s ideological basis grows unsustainable.