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A history
Author: Daniel Weinbren

This book focuses on the handful of innovators who 'were crucial' for the creation of the Open University (OU), which enjoyed a 'rapid gestation period'. It is about the political framework, positioning the OU within the patterns of convergence and divergence in the expanding higher education system of the late twentieth and early twenty-first centuries. The OU has its roots in more than a century of engagement with those excluded from conventional higher education. The book is an assessment of the ways in which, since the 1990s, the OU has sought to enable learners to work together to create knowledge. One way to understand the development of the OU is in terms of a business model. The book addresses the crucible in which the OU was formed in terms of politics, socio-economic developments and innovations in teaching. Through practice, reflection and amendment of teaching the OU developed ways of supporting learning through participation in dialogues. The book concentrates upon the activities of Harold Wilson and a small group around him who were responsible for the creation and early running of the university. It focuses on how governments sought to deploy versions of the market across the higher education sector. The book outlines the OU's continued development of self-directed, student-centred learning.

Universities have historically generated knowledge outside of specific local contexts. These pure research methodologies produce knowledge that is carefully partitioned from the practical realities of a phenomenon. This book suggests a world in peril requires us to question this approach, particularly in the field of environmental sustainability. Environmental health affects everyone and requires integrated and interdisciplinary answers to complex issues. This requires bold action and a radical take on the world. Derived from the Latin radix or “root”, a radical spirit is one that searches for meaning and affirms community.” The community, in this case, is an environment that supports diverse life.

Anomalies and opportunities

This is the first book-length study of the humanities from Newman to Bologna in the Irish context. It focuses on unique characteristics of university policy in the National University that constrained humanities education. Ireland was a deeply religious country throughout the twentieth century but the colleges of its National University never established a theology or religion department. The official first language of Ireland is Irish but virtually all teaching in the Arts and Humanities is in English. The book examines the influence of such anomalies on humanities education and on Irish society in general. Has the humanities ethos of the Irish University departed radically from the educational ideals of John Henry Newman, its most illustrious ‘founder’? The book re-examines Newman’s vision for the university as well as responses to the 1908 Universities Act. It investigates how leading Irish educationalists and cultural theorists such as Padraig, Pearse, Denis Donoghue, J. J. Lee, Declan Kiberd and Richard Kearney nurtured an Irish humanities perspective in response to more established humanities traditions associated with F. R. Leavis, Edward Said, and Martha Nussbaum. The book employs a comparative approach in examining recent humanities movements such as Irish Studies and postcolonial studies. Humanities debates from other national contexts such as France, the US, and Asia are examined in light of influential work on the university by Samuel Weber, Immanuel Kant, Pierre Bourdieu and Jacques Derrida. This book will appeal to the general public and to students and scholars of Irish education, history and cultural theory.

The claim of reason
Ruth Sheldon

3 University melodramas: the claim of reason The university loves to have guidelines and policies in place to back itself up … but it just becomes a bit of, as I would say in Arabic, a ‘Syrian drama’, which is very like [in a high-​pitched voice] aahhhh! Lots of things going on, but nothing much is happening.1 In April 2010, I began my initiation into the student politics of Palestine–​Israel when I went to observe the NUS National Conference. The UJS and FOSIS had organised a fringe meeting entitled ‘Hate Speech on Campus’, which had generated intense advance

in Tragic encounters and ordinary ethics

This book provides an account of the University of Manchester's struggle to meet the government's demands for the rapid expansion of higher education in the 1950s and the 1960s. It looks at the University's ambitious building programme: the controversial attempts to reform its constitution and improve its communications amid demands for greater democracy in the workplace, the struggle to retain its old pre-eminence in a competitive world where new ‘green field’ universities were rivalling older civic institutions. The book tells the story, not just from the point of view of administrators and academics, but also from those of students and support staff (such as secretaries, technicians and engineers). It not only uses official records, but also student newspapers, political pamphlets and reminiscences collected through interviews.

John Privilege

3 The university campaign The question The issue of university education in Ireland was a constant source of grievance for the bishops. The university system in Ireland was ‘at the centre of a network of proselytism and indifferentism which the hierarchy had come to regard as the characteristic of the Protestant constitution in Ireland’.1 The Roman Catholic Church demanded the same rights and recognition which the state extended to Protestants in terms of statefunded, denominational university education. The demand for national justice, however, masked other

in Michael Logue and the Catholic Church in Ireland, 1879–1925
Science shops and policy development
Eileen Martin, Emma McKenna, Henk Mulder, and Norbert Steinhaus

6 Embedding community–university partnerships: science shops and policy  development Eileen Martin, Emma McKenna, Henk Mulder and Norbert Steinhaus Science shops originated in the Netherlands in the 1970s as part of the wider democratization-of-science movement. The gap between civil society and traditional knowledge providers was recognized by Dutch students, who established relationships with civil society organizations (CSOs) to bring their research needs into universities where they could be addressed by students as part of their academic course of study. The

in Knowledge, democracy and action
Johan Östling

1 The history of the university The university and historiography The university has a grand and extensive past. On ceremonial occasions it tends to be presented as the European societal institution with the longest unbroken tradition, alongside the monarchy, the judicial system, and the Catholic Church. It ought to be possible to write the rich history of the university employing dissimilar focal points; it should be possible to vary its theme. Nevertheless, it is remarkable how limited the historiography of the university has been – and still is.1 As a genre

in Humboldt and the modern German university