March 03, 2005

A Need for Autonomous People: autonomy and blogging

Over at Under the Influence of Epoche, Aaron Campbell muses on the link between pedagogy, autonomy, blogging and democracy, thanks to a post by Robert Patterson which has reverberated around the section of blogging community concerned with society and pedagogy: Going Homeapcampbell :
Whether old or new, it certainly makes a lot of sense to me. For I see societies of people alienated and manipulated by institutions of government, big business, advertising, and healthcare, while institutions of education merely provide more fodder for the status quo machine: brainwashed, powerless, and mentally enslaved "citizens" who equate happiness with material possession and consume, vote, and act in accordance with such conditioning. This becomes even more problematic when actual war results just to keep those big institutions running and the power structure stable. How else can we explain how Bush was re-elected by popular vote and that Iran is soon to be the next victim of a violent military and cultural invasion? Is this what the concept of 'democracy' was meant to embody? Of course not....
Here, Aaron makes a link between blogging and autonomy:
The possibility that personal webpublishing might encourage a move toward autonomy is real. Just as Fromm argued that the social structure determines which aspects of the social character are dominant, perhaps likewise the semantic social network as learning environment might play a role helping learners become more autonomous in the way described above. If institutions of learning founded their pedagogy and practice on learning methods that allowed the learner to develop this kind of autonomy en route to cooperative knowledge creation and the development of useful skills, we could indeed achieve at least a partial degree of sanity and peace in this world.
And Paterson does the same, here. Great minds obviously think alike.

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