Emancipated Education: Essays on the Nurturing of Critical Discourse
The obsession with world rankings and vocational training has turned universities into factories for the production of students and publications. Teaching plays second fiddle to research output, normally circulated within a small circle of ‘experts’ to be validated or condemned to the abyss, leading to the justifiable charge that universities are ivory towers. In Emancipated Education Dr Azhar Ibrahim’s call to reclaim the space of what he calls the educative front, as a site for emancipation, is timely and urgent. Channelling the thoughts of giants like Paulo Freire and N.F.S. Grundtvig, the book articulates the higher purpose of higher education. It serves to re-humanise the human process of learning that we may have harmed.
Dr Nazry Bahrawi
Literary and cultural critic
Co-founder of the Bras Basah Open School for Theory and Philosophy
Dr Azhar’s book is a detour around the current climate of global education, which tends to celebrate rankings at the expense of empowerment and humanisation. He clearly shows that education should be a combative front against any establishment, without having to succumb to dogmatic power, through a combination of reason, ethics, conscience and spirituality. For him, education is not just a ladder for immediate gains, but is also supposed to be a part of supra-structure to ensure social justice. Emancipated Education is a must-read book for teachers, lecturers, and education policy makers alike who wish to recharge their intellectual spirits.
Dr Achmad Uzair Fauzan
Director of the Office for International Affairs,
Sunan Kalijaga State Islamic University, Yogyakarta
About the Author
Azhar Ibrahim is a Lecturer at the Department of Malay Studies, National University of Singapore (NUS). His research interests include the sociology of religion, sociology of literature, critical literacy, and Malay-Indonesian intellectual development. Amongst his published books are Historical Imagination and Cultural Responses to Colonialism and Nationalism (2017), Menyanggah Belenggu Kerancuan Fikiran Masakini (2016), Contemporary Islamic Discourse in the Malay-Indonesian World: Critical Perspectives (2014), Narrating Presence: Awakening from Cultural Amnesia (2014).