Review from ROAPE Volume 14 Number 38
Socialism, Education & Development - Challenge to Zimbabwe
It is a commonplace to observe that Marxist social science has had an increasing influence on the study of Africa since the early 1970s. But this influence has had relatively little impact in the field of educational studies. Moreover, education as a social institution has received little attention in studies of the political economy of Africa (with the partial exception of South Africa). This is exemplified by this journal, whose contributors have seldom looked at education in any depth. Yet it can be argued that education plays an important part in the processes of class formation, social reproduction, economic development, hegemony and so forth, all of central concern to Marxist analysis. This role of education has had growing recognition in the West and over the last ten years there has been an expanding body of Marxist scholarship concerned with issues of schooling and class, state and ideology in the advanced capitalist countries. More recently the high levels of unemployment created by the current crisis of capitalism have made the relationship between education and employment a significant practical as well as theoretical issue for the Left. The problems in the world capitalist economy mean that such issues must also be confronted in the countries of Africa. Equally, their internal configurations of political and economic contradictions make education an important area for socialist research and action.