Tied Knowledge: Power in Higher Education
Tied Knowledge is a book designed to provide a practical conceptual framework for understanding the dynamics of higher education. Using examples primarily from Australia, Britain and the United States, it examines power structures both outside and inside academia and how they interact and shape knowledge. These structures include hierarchy, disciplines, patriarchy, the state, capitalism and professions. Academia as a system of power itself both resists and accommodates these other power systems. The key resource used by the academics to promote their interests is the power to create and legitimate knowledge. By its form and content, this knowledge is tied to both the interests of academics and to those of powerful groups in society. The book is neither pro nor anti-academia. Instead, it focusses on the structural factors shaping academic behaviour so that initiatives can strengthen and broaden the positive features of academia while trying to overcome the negative features. A key portion of the book is an examination and assessment of the main strategies that have been used to reform or challenge the nature and uses of academic power.