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Michael Apple

Interview with Michael Apple

Excerpts-Part 2

The questions and answers are taken from Education, Power, and Personal Biography  (pages 21-44).

Q:Early on you were very critical of the new social policy that has been advanced by the Clinton administration. Have you changed your perceptions?

A:We have in fact transformed the meaning of democracy, so now it's almost all about consumption practices. We have de-classed, de-raced, and de-gendered people, de-sexed them, de-territorialzied them in some ways, so that we're all individuals. What's public is bad, and what's private is good, by and large. There are, of course, contradictory things happening. As we look at what is going on in class, race, gender, and other kinds of terms, the state is still an arena of struggle. But the discussion almost always now occurs on the terrain of the Right.

One of the first things that Clinton did was to promote the right to abortion. Out of this politics, there are certain gains that are now institutionalized within the state over women's right to choice. While this was progressive on many other kinds of things, the state is still profoundly a racial state. Clinton has tried to build some moderate policies in reaction to Reagan/Bush, who aggressively used the state to support attacks on gains that people of color made.

In education, Clinton gets support from many people who are progressive, because of the great fear of privatization and the great fear of the racial terrain that is being established.

Q:You have two new books?

A:Both are now published. One is a very different kind of book. So I've finished a book called Democratic Schools with Jim Beane. In this book, I act not as an analyst but as a secretary. I am the amanuensis for four democratic schools that are educationally progressive and committed to social justice.


Part 3

  Critical Theorists: Michael Apple Values & Politics Denunciation Reproduction, Contestation & Curriculum Power/Knowledge/Pedagogy  

    Learning in Schools Cultural Capital & Official Knowledge An Interview with Michael Apple Other Sites Online  
Updated: 11/24/99
Laurie Williams