An ESSHC session ‘Academia as an arena of elite formation and democratisation’,
Organised by the Elites network and the Politics, Citizenship, and Nations network,
The 7th European Social Science History Conference (ESSHC), Lisbon, 27 Feb – 1 Mar 2008
Deadline for proposals: 23 March 2007.
For a session ‘Academia as an arena of elite formation and democratisation’, I am looking for papers (20 min each) that might address some aspects of the following themes:
Ever since the late 18th century, the University has had a dual mission. On the one hand, the University has been intimately linked to the emergence and functioning of the nation-state, offering various ways to unify knowledge and power. On the other hand, the University has also been a locus for critical intelligentsia and socio-political resistance, aiming at democratisation and/or revolution of the society as a whole. As examples we could take academic counter-movements as different as the anti-imperialist Pan-Africans of the late-19th century Liberia, the global Student Revolt of 1968, and the development of Women’s Studies in the early 1980’s as a challenge to the collegial fraternity of white middle-class males.
At the moment, we are faced with a paradox that more people are allowed access to higher education than ever before, but the most valuable rewards of higher education are more concentrated as in the past. The session is thus open for a debate: How the University has acted as an agent of democratisation, or have claims for “democratisation” mainly been presented to legitimate a massive subsidy to the middle and upper-middle classes? To analyse the present situation, a deeper understanding of its historical backgrounds and a comparison of different experiences in various parts of the world is essential.
How to propose a paper
If you want to propose a paper, please send your abstract (ca. 200-300 words) to the session organiser, Dr. Marja Jalava (firstname.lastname@example.org), no later than 23 March 2007.
For further information of these networks and other proposed session themes, please visit the web pages http://www.iisg.nl/esshc/elites.php or http://www.iisg.nl/esshc/politics.php
Ph.D., Adjunct Professor
Department of History
P.O. Box 4 (Yliopistonkatu 3)
00014 University of Helsinki
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