Re: grades

Jeffrey R Galin (galin+@PITT.EDU)
Mon, 2 Sep 1996 12:18:13 -0400

On Mon, 2 Sep 1996, Bob King wrote:

Absolutely. social context is as important a factor in defining
the educational issues or problems as are the perceived failures, the
discursive strategies we use to explain those problems, and solutions that
emerge from the ways in which the problems are defined. And Gramsci helps
us get there. But, I end up using Foucault to fill the gaps where
Gramsci's incomplete notes trap him in the utopian Marxist arguments of
the "intellectual-moral bloc which can "make politically possible the
intellectual progress of the mass." After all, Gramsci wrote his notes
from jail as a political prisoner within a fascist regime.


> On Sat, 31 Aug 1996, Jeffrey R Galin wrote:
> > Within our society, there is next to no evaluation wihtout
> > grading. Why pretend that the academic institution is so rarified that it
> > can move above the epistemology within which it is grounded?
> Jeff, good point. In studying the history of educational reform, the
> thing that stood out for me was that problems and solutions keep recurring
> because they are repeadedly framed as educational problems rather than as
> education + social problems. In other words, the repeating is less a
> matter of rhetorical style than simple elision of concrete social factors
> (such as those that Marcy outlined) and, beyond that, elision of social
> theory itself!
> Many educational theorists have been influenced by the work of Antonio
> Gramsci in this regard. He talks about the model of "hegemony" to
> describe the complex interweaving of school and society, and also promotes
> a concept of "public intellectual" to re-place the notion of "academic."
> Both of these concepts provide frames in which grading and society, for
> example, can be talked about in a single context.
> Bob King

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