TOWARDS A CRITIQUE OF THE HIGHER EDUCATION INDUSTRY

I. Farin

University of Tasmania (AUSTRALIA)
While the technological-bureaucratic transformation of modern tertiary education has been gathering steam over the last two decades, critical responses to it have been hampered by a near total lack of a principled philosophical orientation and clear-sighted reflection on the essence of education and higher education in particular. By drawing on the works of Husserl, Heidegger, Castoriadis and Henry, I develop a philosophical argument against the current technological and bureaucratic en-framing and denaturing of Higher Education. Starting from Husserl, I offer a phenomenological sketch of the essence of education and tertiary education in particular. By applying Heidegger's critique of technology to the current Tertiary Education Industry, I show that there is a real danger that current trends undermine genuine or authentic Higher Education, which, in the words of Henry, may very well usher in a new "barbarism." In the last section of the paper I discuss possible ways to combat this potential self-destruction of Higher Education in our age.