Monday, December 04, 2006

Le sujet de la critique (n'est pas tout seul)

"My point of departure with [Masao] Miyoshi [, author of "A Borderless World? From Colonialism to Transnationalism and the Decline of the Nation-State", Critical Inquiry 19:4, Summer 1993] arises where he addresses the implication of intellectuals and academics in this process [of a shift from culture to global capital]. He situates individual involvement as a moral question, noting that instead of resisting, academics seem only too happy to become 'frequent fliers and globe-trotters' (750). I would argue that individual consciousness is not the issue. I think that Miyoshi's recognition of the complicity of the discourses of Cultural Studies and multiculturalism with the needs of the TNCs [transnational corporations] has to be analyzed at the level of the University, where the University is understood as a bureaucratic institution developing toward the role of TNC in its own right. Hence the task of thinkers in the humanities and in other disciplines can no longer be pitched at the level of individual resistance, of the heroism of thought, since the institution doesn't need a hero. There are no heroes in bureaucracy, as Kafka indicates."
Bill Readings, The University in Ruins, Harvard UP, 1996, p. 45 (c'est moi qui souligne).


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