November 29, 2011
Bishopsgate Institute presents Whose Mind is it Anyway?
This series of talks considers what or who affects how we think and behave. Whilst we may be aware of the more obvious influences, such as advertising or religious belief what is the effect of the more subliminal? Fear, morality, education, access to information and the design of the environment we live in are all examined in this series of stimulating conversations.
The introduction of the National Curriculum in 1988 laid out clear directions for schools on how young people should be taught. However the teaching of the next generation remains as controversial as ever - the curriculum is widely debated and the very purpose of education often questioned. If, as some have argued, the role of the curriculum is to ensure that established knowledge is passed on or that good citizens are created and the problems of society addressed, then what are the implications for the decision-makers in government? Is education simply there to promote political values? Who else has a say in how schools are run?
This discussion will explore the purpose of education, who decides the curriculum and the development of our education system, and what this means for the minds of the next generation.
Co-panellists include Professor John White (Institute of Education), Andy Thornton (Citizenship Foundation), Frank Furedi (Professor of Sociology, University of Kent).
London , EC2M 4QH
Verso and the Bishopsgate Institute are offering three pairs of tickets for some lucky winners. They are for each of these three forthcoming events in London:
Dan Hind, the author of The Threat to Reason and The Return of the Public, will take part in a debate on Resisting Control: Dissent, Protest and Organised Belligerence, with Bibi van der Zee, Alex Butterworth and others on 3 November.
Dan Hind's and Melissa Benn's talks are part of the Whose Mind is it Anyway events, a series of talks held at Bishopsgate Institute that considers what or who affects how we think and behave.
Melissa Benn's School Wars, a timely exploration of the struggle for Britain's education system, has received yet more positive reviews.
In the Independent, Phil Beadle heralded Benn's "lightness of touch" and deft irony. He concluded:
In terms of future education policy, Benn's book could well be an important watershed. It is a clear-sighted re-statement of why universal, comprehensive education is - obviously - the best option. It should, and hopefully will, be taken as a rallying call to the left
School Wars, Melissa Benn's impassioned exploration of the inequalities of our current education system, has been reviewed in the Guardian by Andy Beckett and in the Observer by Anthony Seldon.
Finding Benn's "measured tone refreshing, in a debate usually full of denunciations", Andy Beckett engaged with her position in the book:
Benn already finds the status quo - if the ever-shifting world of English education can be said to have one - alarming. With the fluent indignation of the committed activist, she writes: "Most state schools occupy an uncomfortable space between public and private; they are neither business enterprises, nor a robust public service ...