May 9, 2013

on using your privilege against the system that gives it to you

Chomsky, from the Chomsky Foucault debate:
 
Now as to how I tolerate MIT, that raises another question. There are people who argue, and I have never understood the logic of this, that a radical ought to dissociate himself from oppressive institutions. The logic of that argument is that Karl Marx shouldn’t have studied in the British Museum which, if anything, was the symbol of the most vicious imperialism in the world, the place where all the treasures of Empire were gathered, the rape of the colonies was all poured in there. But I think Karl Marx was quite right in studying in the British Museum. He was right in using the resources and in fact the liberal values of the civilization that he was trying to overcome, against it. And I think the same applies in this case.

- many thanks to Wes Attewel for this one!

5 comments:

ana australiana said...

And now look what's happened to the video of that debate....1

http://roarmag.org/2013/05/chomsky-foucault-debate-public-knowledge/

Kelly Lempa said...

This same argument is used in Puerto Rico sometimes concerning colonialism and daily living. The Independentista students going to university and using federal loans/scholarships in order to be able to study are criticized. "If you want to be free from US control, imperialism, colonialism, why do you accept their help in going to school?" This question is asked on many levels. I still have no answer, just many questions and a few under developed ideas...

Kelly Lempa said...

This same argument is used in Puerto Rico sometimes concerning colonialism and daily living. The Independentista students going to university and using federal loans/scholarships in order to be able to study are criticized. "If you want to be free from US control, imperialism, colonialism, why do you accept their help in going to school?" This question is asked on many levels. I still have no answer, just many questions and a few under developed ideas...

Sara Koopman said...

Thanks Kelly! I generally disagree with Audre Lorde and think that the master's tools CAN *sometimes* dismantle the master's house. The thing is, the tools are often toxic, so it's important to hold them carefully.

Sara Koopman said...

ay! Ana I had no idea, thanks for that great link!