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Education and national development in post-independant Mauritius in an international perspective: 1968-1982

Juggernauth, Sutnarain (1987) Education and national development in post-independant Mauritius in an international perspective: 1968-1982. PhD thesis, Institute of Education, University of London.

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Abstract

I will argue that education and development in post-independent Mauritius should be discussed in its proper historical context: the transformation of the international system in the post-war era. The major change was the rise of the U.S.A. as the dominant power in the international system; and it is under the aegis of various American institutions, most particularly the U.N.O, that the concept of education, implying formal education, and the concept of development, implying economic growth in the mode of the Western industrialised countries, were brought together. I will suggest that Susanne Bodenheimer's model of 'Dependency and Imperialism' offers a new theoretical framework to better understand national international dynamics. From a Marxist-Leninist perspective she argues that the rich industrialised countries of the West, through various infrastructures of dependency, indirectly underdevelop the Third-World countries and that this process has been uneven for some Third-World countries do have a dependent developed sector which acts as a 'bridgehead' between the centre and the periphery and which also gives rise to various clientele classes who have a vested interest in keeping the international system intact. She considers 'monopoly capital' as a further stage of capitalist development leading to the rise of multinationals and the internationalization of capital. She identifies a multiplicity of causes for the indirect under development of the Third World countries. She points out that the development of capitalism should be studied not only at its point of impact, but also at its point of origin. She finally observes that 'dependency' and 'imperialism' are the two sides of the same process: the former is the view from below, and the latter is the view from above. I will argue that Mauritius is a 'fragmented' social formation which, throughout its history, has given rise to what I have called a sectorally fragmented system of educational institutions and practices which have been largely determined by forces - religious, cultural, political and economic - external to the Mauritian social structure. This sectorally fragmented system of education has emerged as the educational system became increasingly the site of conflict between different social groups, dominated by the French national bourgeoisie. Since the nineteenth century, the dominant educational culture transmitted by the sectorally fragmented educational system has been that of the dominant class of the British metropolis-an educational culture which gives access to various kinds of employment in the Civil Service, which bestows prestige and status on its possessor and which is the main channel of social mobility. The sectorally fragmented educational system is perpetuated through a huge network of institutions, agencies and agents and that it has no systemic links with the mode of production in the country since its main aim has been to socialize the Mauritian child into an 'expressive' order rather than in an 'instrumental' one; that is education and production has been strongly insulated from each other. I have argued that there is a close link between the educational culture, in its commodified form, and the rise of the power elite which would, eventually, adopt a 'clientele' role in post-independent Mauritius. Clientele classes, in the Mauritian context, is a key concept as it cuts across both, the class and caste lines, since contemporary Mauritius contains both these social categories and brings to the fore the underlying mechanism of a new type of social relationships between exogenous forces and internal clientelism. Clientelism would eventually permeate the 'state' itself as the power elite controlling the apparatuses of the state, rely on material and ideological support from abroad-chiefly Great Britain - to justify its social positions through the accumulation of 'useful knowledge'. In order to legitimize its hegemonic position vis-a-vis other clientele classes and domestic classes, the power elite expands institutions allowing the accumulation of cultural capital which had been so crucial in its own rise to power, thereby creating the social possibilities for its own survival.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Additional Information: Thesis: (PhD) University of London Institute of Education 1987..
Depositing User: Batch Import
Date Deposited: 29 Oct 2014 10:55
Last Modified: 17 Feb 2016 16:08
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