496.1 Education, knowledge and democracy:taking freire and bourdieu to the Moroccan academic field

Friday, August 3, 2012: 10:45 AM
Faculty of Economics, TBA
M'hammed SABOUR , Social Sciences, University of Eastern Finland, Joensuu, Finland

Building on Freire’s thinking of critical pedagogy and Bourdieu’s theory of social reproduction the aim of this paper is to shed lights on the meaning of democracy, knowledge and education for Moroccan students from different social classes and academic disciplines on the one hand, and to assess their cultural and social awareness of the ongoing development policy and global issues, on the other.

Because of the demand for skilled manpower after the independence the first and second educated generations were integrated almost automatically in labour market of State institutions and its subsidiaries. Lately in the course of the last two decades or so this market has become saturated or very selective. Many students from lower classes with modest educational cultural capital with poor training and skills find themselves unemployed especially in some fields of social sciences, humanities and even national sciences (e.g. biology).

As it can be expected the middle class and moneyed stratum do not experience this process in the same way. In order to preserve their distinction and power (hegemony), they use their position and economic disposition by enrolling their offspring in the best educational institutions (e.g. private or foreign French, Spanish or American schools) instead of the overcrowded, poorly staffed and pedagogically inefficient public Moroccan universities. The social reproduction is directly or indirectly is assured among the elite. It goes without saying that this state of affairs gives rise to a deep malaise in Moroccan society and provokes feeling of resentment and disillusion and raise an awareness of the meaning of democracy and knowledge among the students. Although this study concentrates empirically on Moroccan society it will emphasise issues that are thematically common to all Southern Mediterranean countries.