By Peter Jarvis
Discussing such issues as democracy and citizenship, this e-book is the 1st systematic try and examine grownup schooling from a political standpoint.
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Additional resources for Adult Education and the State
The educative function of pressure groups will be analysed in the seventh chapter of this book, but where adult education is non-formalised, it is more likely to function in response to the people’s own defined interests. Once it becomes institutionalised, adult education exposes itself to become an instrument of state and this is almost an inevitability. But it is not inevitable that everybody who passes through the institutionalised system will be conformist and this is one of the dangers of education to the state—that it can never be completely controlled.
It has, therefore, automatically become more conservative. Liberal anti-pluralism also claims that the state does not intervene in the affairs which rational human beings should be able to conduct without state intervention. However, by espousing the theory of monetarism in which the market prevails it has also enabled the large industrial and commercial companies to become even more dominant. This has had a major effect upon education of adults—it has been almost completely redefined as continuing education, which has become an apparently apolitical term although it was pointed out (Jarvis, 1983) that it would prevail over other terms because of its apparently non-political but actually conservative orientation.
It is individualistic in orientation, but it may be interpreted as government support for the underprivileged groups who are clearly having little success in their endeavours to break out of their underprivileged position. If there had not been some obvious signs of political concern it might have resulted in even more social and political unrest among the minority groups. In addition, the government has funded REPLAN, an educational programme for unemployed adults, which may also be interpreted in a similar manner.