Academy as Potentiality

Occasionally in class I find myself saying,“I have no Idea”, to my slightly disbelieving students. This is not a false profession of ignorance or an unbecoming modesty but a genuine expression of the fact that I do not know, in terms of structured knowledge, how to get to where I need to be. It seems to me that the urgent questions and the bodies of knowledge I have at my disposal do not tally and produce a route by which issues, arguments and modes of operating, merge seamlessly. And so it would seem that the task of ‘academy’, of education, is not to affect this seamless merger but to understand this productive disjuncture and its creative possibilities. That subjects and knowledges do not live in a simple state of productive harmony, is the unspoken dimension of the contemporary debate on education, unspoken because it counters the aims to uniformly instrumentalise education towards a set of predetermined outcomes.
As inhabitants of these spaces and atmospheres of ‘academy’ we are forever caught in a, hopefully productive, tension between knowing where we might want to go, being empowered by the sense that we have every right to embark on this journey and equally being aware that we might lack the tools we need or the strength of spirit demanded by any journey into unknown territory. This “I Can/I Can’t” dilemma is at the heart of my understanding of ‘Academy as Potentiality’ which I hope to unfold here.

ROGOLF 004-009 ING.pdf — PDF document, 300Kb
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