Maxist Perspectives of Education

This shows the perspectives from some of the main Maxist thinkers, as well as some definitions.

Yellow - base point

Orange - Explain / backup points.

Red - Definitions. 

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  • Marxist Perspectives on Education
    • Althusser
      • Reproduction of an efficient + obedient workforce.
        • Necessary technical skills
        • Ruling Class ideology and the socialization of workers to accept it.
          • False Consciousnesses
            • It is a failure by members of a social class to recognise their real interests
      • To prevent working class rebelling, ruling class must persuade through ideological state apparatuses.
        • Ideological state Apparatuses- is  a agency which serves to spread the ideology and justify the power of the dominant social class.
    • Bordieu
      • Each social class possess its own cultural framework- called a habitus.
        • Picked up through socialization within the family.
      • Dominant class
        • Power to impose own habitus in education system.
        • Middle/ upper class has more access to culture of dominant class (Cultural capital.
          • Cultural Capital is the knowledge of language, forms of behavior, taste and lifestyle etc. which give middle and upper class and advantage.
    • Illich and Freire
      • Schools are repressive institutions
      • Schools promote conformity and passive acceptance of existing inequalities.
      • Reward with cultural capital + access to higher education = better jobs.
        • If you don't conform to this you are excluded which means a life of lower paid jobs.
      • Produces hegemony and hegemonic control.
        • Hegemony refers to the dominance in society of the ruling class's set of ideas over others, and acceptance of and consent to them by the rest of society.
        • Hegemonic control is where control of the working class is mainly achieved through the hegemony and acceptance of the ruling class.
    • Bowles and Gintis
      • Reproduction of labour power - a hard working and submissive and disciplined workforce.
        • Hidden curriculum,
        • Through the role of the education system, justifying inequality of the organization of education.
      • ' The long shadows of work '
        • reflects the functionalist view of meritocracy.
          • Meritocracy is a society where jobs and pay are allocated on the basis purely of people's individuals talents, abilities and qualifications.
    • Willis
      • Recognizes that schools don't produces willing and obedient workforce.
        • Contradicts most other Marxist opinions.
        • Kids don't obey teachers - they are disruptive.
      • He studied a group of 12 working class boys.
        • They opposed the main aims of the school and its values.
        • They developed an  counter culture for school.


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