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Take Back Higher Education: Race, Youth, and the Crisis of Democracy in the Post-Civil Rights Era Hardcover – May 10, 2004

ISBN-13: 978-1403964236 ISBN-10: 1403964238 Edition: 1st

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"Henry and Susan Giroux are performing an immense public service with this book. It is a sweeping critique of how our culture, especially the educational establishment, has failed to prepare us for the crises of our time. And it offers hope for the possibility of resisting that and creating a new culture, inspirational and profoundly democratic."--Howard Zinn, author of A People's History of the United States

"Henry and Susan Giroux's extraordinary book is an electrifying call to educators to renounce political passivity and to assume the role of public intellectuals prepared to take back schools and universities from the predations of a business driven ideology that silences dissent and
undermines democracy. A beautifully fashioned work of cultural history, it is also a rich and stimulating brew of elegant analysis and powerful polemic. Teachers from the kindergarten classrooms to the ivory tower will be grateful for the hope and affirmation the Girouxs' have give us. All in all, a magnificent achievement."--Jonathan Kozol

"Here, at last, is a critical study in the social sciences that explores ­ with brilliant iconoclasm ­ the connection between the post 9/11 de-democratization of America, the erosion of its politics and its civil rights, its inexorable drift into rabid conservatism, and recent attacks on the form and substance of higher education. Argued with enormous conviction and considerable insight, Take Back Higher Education does for contemporary pedagogy what the likes of John Dewey did for it long ago: insist that the health of our society depends not on consumption or the rampant production of wealth for the rich, but on educating new generations of citizens for open, informed public engagement, for constructive political involvement, for commitment to a social world built on justice and empowerment for all; in short, for all the things currently under threat in the security-obsessed, frightened USA of the early twenty-first century. Here, in other words, is a charter for real freedom through enlightenment, a charter that ought to have been accomplished two hundred or so years ago, but still requires a good fight. Henry and Susan Giroux have undertaken that fight with vigor, energy, and consummate intelligence."--John Comaroff, University of Chicago

About the Author

Henry A. Giroux holds the Global Television Network Chair in Communications in the Faculty of Humanities at McMaster University in Canada. He is the author of many books, including Stealing Innocence, Channel Surfing, and The Abandoned Generation. Susan Searls Giroux is Assistant Professor in the English Department at McMaster University. She is co-author of The Theory Toolbox and co-editor of The Review of Education/Pedagogy/Cultural Studies. The Girouxs live in Hamilton, Ontario in Canada.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan; 1st edition (May 10, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1403964238
  • ISBN-13: 978-1403964236
  • Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 5.8 x 1.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,230,787 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
In Take Back High Education, Giroux and Giroux take a continuing analysis of the neo-liberalization of American education one step further by going for the heart of the academy. They begin this journey by acknowledging that schools should not be narrowed out as "the key to revitalizing a waning political democracy." However, consistent with more than 25 years of critical reflection, the authors contend that higher education should be partners in the struggle for social justice, and that academics have a responsibility to engage young people in that struggle.

Giroux and Giroux charges the reader to look farther than schools by openly wondering "How do we invent a language of community or dare to asset a notion of public good...?" Throughout this book they return to this question, offering challenges to students, academics, and professors alike. The authors readily call on educators to build courses by combining "democratic principles, values, and practices with... the histories and struggles of those often marginalized because of race, class, gender, disability, or age" (p99).

Giroux and Giroux portray colleges and universities as being more than neglected by a public that denies their relevance; because of that, higher education is surrendering academic freedom and judiciousness to the highest bidder: namely, the corporate gods of the US. This new education-market economy is turning once prestigious institutions into psuedo-companies, bent on the "bottom line" and profit margins. However, the responsibility for the "take back" of higher education falls equally on administrative, political, and academic shoulders.
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