The University as critic and conscience of society: hindsights, insights and foresightsThis plenary contribution re-examines the unbearable lightness of internationalization. In hindsight, it looks to question the condition of higher education as a
continuing and continuous crisis. In her book ‘Anti-Crisis’, Roitfeld invites
us to question what has become so normalized as to be almost imperceptible.
What is crisis? Crises are the instances when normativity is laid bare, when we
can revisit and examine the principles, suppositions, premises, criteria, and
logical or causal relations that prevail (Roitfeld 2011,3). Understanding
crisis in this way enables us to open up what is and where we are, and from
there how to think ‘otherwise’ - and to
identify and work on the right questions. The development theorist Frans
Schuurman says that we are caught in a twilight zone between neoliberal
globalism and global neoliberalism (2009, 832). What we want to do is to open
up the cracks in the imaginary and create the possibility for critical
refraction, to let in the light and allow us to see and imagine diverse possibilities
for higher education and public good.