FCJ-228 University, Universitas

Erin Manning, SenseLab, Concordia University, Canada
2019 Fibreculture Journal  
To contend with the contemporary university is to engage on two fronts: to consider how to address the deep inequities for thought and economic survival brought about by the corporatization of the university, and to consider how the foundational exclusionary model of the university is prolonged and exacerbated by its neoliberal turn. What forms of resistance does the corporate university quell? What modes of thought does it silence? How to shift from the enlightenment model without giving in to
more » ... ithout giving in to the market-driven one? How to steal from the university the quality of what moves across it without being consumed by it? If the university leads resistance, it is not because of its enlightenment values or its entrepreneurial posture of innovation: resistance forms in what Moten and Harney call the university's 'undercommons' (2013). Undercommons are the interstices where thought bubbles into orientations as yet uncharted. Thought thrives in the interstices. There is great power here, where the university cannot steal from us, where there remains confidence in our knowing otherwise. When study happens, when an undercommons of thought reveals itself, it is not because the university has fostered it. It's because an enclave has grown in resistance to all the university devalues. Universities have a long history. The mantra of the universitas -'the whole, the universe, the world' -has moved thinkers across the centuries: the university of al-Qarawiyyin, in Fez, Morocco, was founded in 859 followed by Al-Azhar University, in Cairo, Egypt, in 972. The first
doi:10.15307/fcj.30.228.2019 fatcat:wbxqxmsldvhcdntldo3w6r7dnq