August 26, 2009, 11:35 AM
Filed under: essay | Tags: , , ,

Education Week: Educatocracy

written by Alec M. Resnick

“The difference between the successful and unsuccessful student is that the successful student has adapted more effectively to the system, to playing the game. The more closely, quickly, and cheerily you can follow the lead of the adults around you, the more successful you will become.

What matters to these adults? Grades, scores, prestigious colleges, good jobs—in short, success. Youths and adults from all backgrounds know that education is the way to scramble up the socioeconomic ladder. 

This means more and more students are becoming professional students earlier and earlier. School is their job. And, so the ethic goes, a productive worker is a good worker. Though what exactly they produce is unclear, there is no question as to what they become: fully credentialed, well-schooled students. They become the modern aristocrat, the educatocrat.”

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Review of Bruce Wilshire’s Fashionable Nihilism
August 11, 2009, 12:24 AM
Filed under: review | Tags: , ,

Review submitted to Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews

written by David A. Hoekema

“Bruce Wilshire argues, in the first few essays collected here, that the catastrophe Nietzsche foresaw has arrived even sooner than he predicted it would, within the span of one century rather than two. The intellectual world of the universities has embraced nihilism and cannot imagine an alternative. Worst of all, those who are principally responsible for this development are those who should be its most stalwart opponents. It is not unwashed barbarians, Hollywood moguls, or talk-show hosts who have emptied our lives of the possibility of genuine meaning. It is philosophers, and in particular the oligarchic cabal of analytic philosophers who control philosophy conferences, journals, and graduate programs in the United States, who have ushered in the catastrophe that Nietzsche envisioned. Contemporary Western civilization is in a state of advanced decay, and philosophers who regard their discipline as dedicated to systematic and logical resolution of narrowly defined “problems,” Wilshire argues, are principally at fault.”

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*Wilshire, Bruce. Fashionable Nihilism: A Critique of Analytic Philosophy, State University of New York Press, 2002, 171pp, $18.95 (pbk), ISBN 0791454304.