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NEW-MEDIA-CURATING  May 2010

NEW-MEDIA-CURATING May 2010

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Subject:

Re: The pedagogical turn

From:

Verina Gfader <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

Verina Gfader <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Thu, 6 May 2010 09:21:04 +0100

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text/plain

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Hi all

First of all thanks for the posts, I am very delighted that we have so
many great and interesting guests for this month’s theme. Please do sign
the petititon against the closure of the Philosophy Dept in Middlesex if
you haven’t already. 


I briefly want to jump in with some quick thoughts.
Migrational knowledge / or the constitution of a model of knowledge that
as Kate mentions is ‘transferable’, from art-contexts to non-art
contexts. There seems to be a drive or desire to maintain a certain
art-specific knowledge (or knowledge gained through recognising
something through a certain mode appearing there) and perhaps privilege
it to other forms?  
Relating also to Dave’s post about the pedagogical turn I would like to
add a few points:
Talking about education, learning environments, and ultimately subjects
or subjectivities, and the definition of knowledge/non-knowledge Sarat
Maharaj in his essay “Know-how and No-How: stopgap notes on “method” in
visual art as knowledge production” (2009) also links knowledge to an
expansion when he claims that “...today’s expanding knowledge economy [
] we should not only see as a ‘technological development’ but as an
emerging overall condition of living that I prefer to speak of as the
‘grey-matter’ environs.” This economy contains today’s “tendency towards
the institutional captivity of art research, the academisation of
‘thinking through the visual’”. He refers to Aby Warburg’s Bildatlas and
the problem that there is a “drive in theoretical exposition to make
transparent the ‘rationale’ behind Warburg’s ‘chaotic, impromtu
think-feel-know sorties’, to lay them out in a clear-cut way as a
methodological kit”. 
I am interested in how the ‘embedded-ness of art in the work of the
State’ coincides with a claim for (an expertise in) activating
non-knowledge, or where, as Paul O’Neill during the artschool uk project
has claimed, there is a question of how one FEELS in- or outside the
institution. 

Talking about the ‘turn’ itself, and our current rhetoric of flux, how
does this rhetoric contribute to an analysis of the discursive and the
educational? 

To end with a quote by Galloway/Thacker. “One way of bridging the gap
between the technical and political views of networks is therefore to
think of networks as continuously expressing their own modes of
individuation, multiplicity, movements, and levels of connectivity—from
the lowest to the highest levels of the network. In this way, we view
networks as political ontologies inseparable from their being put into
practice.” 


Best
Verina




----- Original Message -----
From: Dave Beech <[log in to unmask]>
Date: Thursday, May 6, 2010 8:10 am
Subject: [NEW-MEDIA-CURATING] The pedagogical turn

> Hi everyone,
> 
> Thanks for inviting me to this forum to talk about the pedagogical 
> turn.
> First of all I want to say that it is important that we see the 
> pedagogicalturn in art as having taken place within the same 
> cultural, political and
> economic conditions as the pedagogical turn in TV entertainment.
> Education-as-entertainment on TV is a huge proportion of factual 
> programmingthat developed in the 1980s and 1990s. We can list these 
> shows without much
> effort ­ cookery programmes, wine programmes, antiques programmes, 
> gardeningprogrammes, survival programmes, technology programmes and 
> medicalprogrammes, as well as a profusion of programmes to help you 
> decorate and do
> up your home, to dress better, to buy and sell property better and 
> to bring
> up children better. Celebrity chefs are a prominent symptom of this
> development of education television.
> 
> At the same time, as education became one of the leading entertainment
> genres, Tony Blair came to power in the UK famously announcing that 
> histhree main priorities as Prime Minister would be ?education, 
> education,educatiion¹. Also, management consultants have had their 
> own pedagogical
> turn, using the techniques and settings of education to deliver more
> complicity by workers and lower management.
> 
> One of the reasons for all of these pedagogical turns is that, as 
> Althusserargues in the late-60¹s, there are two key apparatuses in 
> modern society
> through which individuals are socialized (or interpellated) - the 
> family and
> school. It is one of the two dominant ways in which our 
> subjectivity is
> shaped on the terms of the State. If we understand how dominant the 
> familyis in our psychological, cultural and social make-up ­ how it 
> has become
> almost impossible for us to imagine our individual identity without
> reference to the family in some sense ­ then we might in fact be 
> surprisedthat the pedagogical turn has taken so long.
> 
> We can add an historical dimension to the pedagogical turn by 
> relating it to
> Weber¹s account of the development of modern society as a 
> bureaucratic,rationalized one. Such a society puts experts where 
> tradition and oral
> history once were. The rise of the expert in modern culture 
> includes the
> common trust in professional experts on parenting, marriage, 
> cookery and
> other domestic concerns rather than turning to traditions within 
> the family
> and community. It is precisely with this in mind that Adorno and 
> Horkheimerdeveloped the idea of the ?totally administered society¹. 
> Nowadays we can
> see the rise of the expert linked to the rise of celebrity, with TV 
> chefs,TV gardeners, and so on.
> 
> It is important to note, however, that the pedagogical turn in art,
> entertainment, politics and management coincides today with the 
> State¹sattack on education, especially higher education, and 
> especially art and the
> humanities. Middlesex University has recently announced the closure 
> of its
> world leading philosophy department. This is part of a shift in the 
> State¹sapproach to education which includes privatization by 
> stealth (increasing
> the University¹s dependence on commercial income streams, 
> outsourcing food
> and drink supplies, as well as cleaning, security etc); the enormous
> increase in administration and bureaucracy (as if these activities 
> wouldmake the University work more like a business and less like a 
> seminar room);
> and the globalization of the university (including charging 
> internationalstudents extortionate fees).
> 
> In short, it would be very naïve to think of the pedagogical turn 
> in terms
> of its formal or technical possibilities alone. If we follow 
> Althusser¹sargument, the pedagogical turn is inevitably going to 
> embed art more deeply
> in the work of the State, either directly in cultural regeneration 
> projects,or indirecly in reinforcing the kinds of subjectivity that 
> schools produce
> to bind individuals to the State.
> 
> Thanks again
> Dave
> 

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