LLAKES Research Seminar: “Socialism, Education and Equality”
4.00 to 5.30 pm, Thursday 3 November 2016, UCL Institute of Education, 20 Bedford Way, London WC1H 0AL. Room 784, Level 7.
Presenter: Dr Paul Auerbach, Kingston University
Dr Paul Auerbach obtained a Ph.D. in Economics from the University of Wisconsin and is Reader in Economics at Kingston University. He will talk about his newly released book, On Socialist Optimism.
He offers an alternative political economy for the twenty-first century. Present-day capitalism has generated growing inequality of income and wealth, persistent high levels of unemployment and ever-diminishing prospects for young people. But in the absence of a positive vision of how society and the economy might develop in the future, the present trajectory of capitalism will never be derailed, no matter how acute the critique of present-day developments.
Auerbach argues that the traditional emphasis in socialist thought on state ownership of the means of production and central planning was based on a misreading of the history of capitalism. Instead, a socialist strategy should focus on the education and upbringing of children in the context of social equality and household security. This approach yields a well-defined path to human development and liberation, as well as democratic control of working life and public affairs. Socialism as human development gives a unity and direction to progressive policies that are otherwise seen to be a form of pragmatic tinkering in the context of a pervasive capitalist reality.