Big Motherfucking Esoteric Cats

January 15, 2010

The notion that universities are not part of the “real world” is a mainstreamed right-wing anti-intellectual lie. Yeah, university faculty are elitist egg-heads living in a an ivory tower far removed from the “real world”, but corporate oligarchs with marble bathrooms in their offices flying around in private jets and telling the fucking United States government what to do are living in the “real world”.

The fact of the matter is that university faculty are at the heart of the bourgeouisie (or however the fuck you spell that), no different from shopkeepers, mid-level corporate managers, non-flag level military officers, elementary and secondary school administrators, white-collar civil servants, and all the rest. There are obvious interests served by convincing the rest of the bourgeouisie and, particularly, the working class and poor, that university faculty are something different, which any schmo with half a fucking brain can easily discern.

(h/t FSP.)

5 Responses to “Big Motherfucking Esoteric Cats”

  1. Narya Says:

    When I was in academe and someone described it as “not the real world,” I’d point out that I had to bring actual money to the grocery store and to the landlord; simply bringing a good idea or a brilliant chapter or even a well-thought-out argument really wouldn’t work.

  2. LadyDay Says:

    Excellent point!

  3. Katharine Says:

    I think a good response might be “Yes, I live in the real world. I pay my bills, I eat, I sleep, I shit, I commute to campus to lecture. I’m just smarter than you, dumbass.”

  4. The Barefoot Bum Says:

    The fact of the matter is that university faculty are at the heart of the bourgeouisie…

    In Marx’s terminology, the bourgeoisie are the capitalist ruling class, not the modern professional-managerial middle class. They are the ones who live exclusively or predominantly from economic rent: rental of real estate, interest and profit. (In Marx’s time, the professional-managerial middle class typically “owned” in some sense their own capital, but lived predominantly by using that capital directly rather than by profiting from its use by others. Marx thus labeled them the petty- (or petite-) bourgeoisie, i.e. the “small capitalists”.

    The confusion between bourgeoisie and middle-class is historical: Originally, “bourgeoisie” is medieval French for “town-dwellers”. During the struggle with the ruling feudal class, the merchant and industrial class, who made most extensive use of town dwelling — i.e. bourgeois — labor, were at that time the “middle” class between the upper feudal class and the lower laboring classes (distinguished between the peasantry, agricultural workers and proletariat, industrial workers).


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