Home > New vs. Old Paradigm, students > Students, INET and “Repressive Tolerance”

Students, INET and “Repressive Tolerance”

As a follow-up to Rethinking Economics rejects INET’s “Core Curriculum” here is an excerpt from a Rethinking Economics blog post back in August by David Wells.

. . .  just before the final keynote address, a short video was played in which Robert Johnson, the President of INET, sent his best wishes to the conference and congratulated the organisers – but also suggested at one point that the students should be ‘guided’ by INET.

This is strange. Why should the students be ‘guided’ by INET? Why not the other way around? After all, it is the students who are the instigators of this revolution and who are at the front line, manning the barricades. INET are very active in their own way – the CORE curriculum project is especially interesting – and they supply invaluable funding, including for this conference*, but they are essentially secondary actors on the stage. The protagonists are the students, not just in the UK but all over the world: the ISIPE now has (at least) 65 member associations in 30 countries.

. . .  Putting these points together, and writing as one of the older generation who was actually there at the time, I am reminded of the 1965 essay by Herbert Marcuse on ‘Repressive Tolerance’.

Lord Turner is happy to use his vast experience to re-examine macroeconomics, but the foundations are, frankly, OK. Everyone acknowledges that ideology is present, but no-one actually wants to analyse it deeply. Robert Johnson wishes the students well but hopes that they will accept his avuncular guidance . . .

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