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Interdisciplinary Humanities Group

Rethinking Pedagogy Reading Group

Abstract

Scholars working in the humanities are sometimes described "humanists.”  As teachers their commitment to humanism and the humanities would seem to presuppose a curriculum project directed toward the full and highest development of each student’s natural humane capacities. 

Yet, powerful critiques of humanism, including Marx, Freud, Althusser, Foucault, and many feminists, post-structuralists, and postmodernists challenge the traditional humanist conception of subjectivity, and thus, perhaps, the fundamental curricular project of the humanities as conventionally construed. 

This reading group will meet 4 times in the Spring semester to discuss contemporary curricular theory informed by anti-humanist thought. 

What are the implications for curriculum and instruction in different humanities disciplines?  Are anti-humanist pedagogies determinist or liberatory?  How do they connect to the contemporary context of the public university and public education, that is our era of capitalist crisis, funding cutbacks, standardization and assessment, market-driven neo-liberalism, globalization, and resistance typified by increasing curricular diversity, tuition protest, and Occupy resistances.