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Resisting Neoliberalism in EducationLocal, National and Transnational Perspectives$
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Lyn Tett and Mary Hamilton

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9781447350057

Published to Policy Press Scholarship Online: May 2020

DOI: 10.1332/policypress/9781447350057.001.0001

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Strategies of resistance in the neoliberal university

Strategies of resistance in the neoliberal university

(p.135) 9 Strategies of resistance in the neoliberal university
Resisting Neoliberalism in Education

Mary Hamilton

Policy Press

Major changes are taking place in the UK university sector as HE is transformed into a high value commodity on the international market. These changes impact strongly on the day-to-day experience, relationships and identities of academic staff. This chapter reports on an interview study of academics’ writing practices in three UK Universities and three disciplines. Despite ample and vivid evidence of stress, acceleration of work, loss of autonomy and deteriorating working conditions we found little trace in our data of organized, collective resistance. However, there were many examples of tactical and symbolic workarounds and of staff holding on to core disciplinary values and vocational commitments. The chapter suggests that the framework of "everyday resistance" as proposed and documented in many contexts by Scott and others helps us to understand these reactions and how they reflect high levels of discomfort and wider frustration with the directions in which universities are moving.

Keywords:   Neoliberalism, education, higher education, universities, international, resistance, sociology of education

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