Excellence in Higher Education: Is There Really No Alternative?

 

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dc.contributor.author Nash, Andrew
dc.date.accessioned 2017-09-20T13:22:32Z
dc.date.available 2017-09-20T13:22:32Z
dc.date.issued 2013-03
dc.identifier.citation Nash, A. (2013). Excellence in Higher Education: Is There Really No Alternative? Kagisano No. 9: The Aims of Higher Education. Pretoria: South African Council on Higher Education. en_ZA
dc.identifier.isbn 978-1-919856-84-1 en_ZA
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/11427/25247
dc.description.abstract Excellence, according to Bill Readings, “has become the unifying principle of the contemporary university” (1996: 22). Excellence is the central category in the university’s current self-conception, the point on which managerial authority believes itself to be at its strongest, and at times believes itself to be impregnable. The only alternative to excellence in this discourse — or the only alternative that can be admitted — is mediocrity. In the South African context, this contrast can be given a political and racial edge, as in Mamphela Ramphele’s claim that “Black people did not fight against apartheid only to settle for mediocrity” (2008: 219). Student struggles against apartheid raised the banner of freedom, rather than excellence, but these struggles can be used to legitimate excellence and to give retrospective content to the idea of freedom. To think critically about excellence, we need to see it not just as an outcome but also as a managerial practice or system that impacts on every aspect of higher education. We also have to see how it fills a pressing historical need within academic life. All too often, the advocates of excellence conceal that history, making it impossible for us to ask whether that need could be met in other ways. en_ZA
dc.language eng en_ZA
dc.relation.ispartofseries Kagisano en_ZA
dc.title Excellence in Higher Education: Is There Really No Alternative? en_ZA
dc.type Chapter in Book en_ZA
uct.type.publication Research en_ZA
uct.type.resource Chapter en_ZA
dc.publisher.institution University of Cape Town
dc.publisher.faculty Faculty of Humanities en_ZA
dc.publisher.department Department of Political Studies en_ZA
uct.type.filetype Text
uct.type.filetype Image
dc.identifier.apacitation Nash, A. (2013). Excellence in Higher Education: Is There Really No Alternative?., <i>Kagisano</i> University of Cape Town ,Faculty of Humanities ,Department of Political Studies. http://hdl.handle.net/11427/25247 en_ZA
dc.identifier.chicagocitation Nash, Andrew. "Excellence in Higher Education: Is There Really No Alternative?" In <i>KAGISANO</i>, n.p.: University of Cape Town ,Faculty of Humanities ,Department of Political Studies. 2013. http://hdl.handle.net/11427/25247. en_ZA
dc.identifier.vancouvercitation Nash A. Excellence in Higher Education: Is There Really No Alternative?.. Kagisano. [place unknown]: University of Cape Town ,Faculty of Humanities ,Department of Political Studies; 2013. [cited yyyy month dd]. http://hdl.handle.net/11427/25247. en_ZA
dc.identifier.ris TY - Chapter in Book AU - Nash, Andrew AB - Excellence, according to Bill Readings, “has become the unifying principle of the contemporary university” (1996: 22). Excellence is the central category in the university’s current self-conception, the point on which managerial authority believes itself to be at its strongest, and at times believes itself to be impregnable. The only alternative to excellence in this discourse — or the only alternative that can be admitted — is mediocrity. In the South African context, this contrast can be given a political and racial edge, as in Mamphela Ramphele’s claim that “Black people did not fight against apartheid only to settle for mediocrity” (2008: 219). Student struggles against apartheid raised the banner of freedom, rather than excellence, but these struggles can be used to legitimate excellence and to give retrospective content to the idea of freedom. To think critically about excellence, we need to see it not just as an outcome but also as a managerial practice or system that impacts on every aspect of higher education. We also have to see how it fills a pressing historical need within academic life. All too often, the advocates of excellence conceal that history, making it impossible for us to ask whether that need could be met in other ways. DA - 2013-03 DB - OpenUCT DP - University of Cape Town LK - https://open.uct.ac.za PB - University of Cape Town PY - 2013 SM - 978-1-919856-84-1 T1 - Excellence in Higher Education: Is There Really No Alternative? TI - Excellence in Higher Education: Is There Really No Alternative? UR - http://hdl.handle.net/11427/25247 ER - en_ZA


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