Links I liked…


  • Save yourself a month of therapy and read this article about the critical importance of kindness in relationships (well worth the read) – thanks Helen Blaine.
  • I did two interviews with News24 regarding the WEF education ranking fiasco – (“SA does not rank last for maths and science” and “Don’t accept all facts about SA as truth“, and my M&G article is here)
  • Cool article on “The peril of hipster economics” – “Gentrification spreads the myth of native incompetence: That people need to be imported to be important, that a sign of a neighbourhood’s ‘success’ is the removal of its poorest residents. True success lies in giving those residents the services and opportunities they have long been denied.”
  • 2014 Inyathelo report: “Student Access and Success: Issues and Interventions in South African Universities” (PDF)
  • Why should English majors exist? – a lovely 2013 New Yorker article worth reading. An excerpt: “So: Why should English majors exist? Well, there really are no whys to such things, anymore than there are to why we wear clothes or paint good pictures or live in more than hovels and huts or send flowers to our beloved on their birthday. No sane person proposes or has ever proposed an entirely utilitarian, production-oriented view of human purpose. We cannot merely produce goods and services as efficiently as we can, sell them to each other as cheaply as possible, and die. Some idea of symbolic purpose, of pleasure-seeking rather than rent seeking, of Doing Something Else, is essential to human existence. That’s why we pass out tax breaks to churches, zoning remissions to parks, subsidize new ballparks and point to the density of theatres and galleries as signs of urban life, to be encouraged if at all possible. When a man makes a few billion dollars, he still starts looking around for a museum to build a gallery for or a newspaper to buy. No civilization we think worth studying, or whose relics we think worth visiting, existed without what amounts to an English department—texts that mattered, people who argued about them as if they mattered, and a sense of shame among the wealthy if they couldn’t talk about them, at least a little, too. It’s what we call civilization. Even if we read books and talk about them for four years, and then do something else more obviously remunerative, it won’t be time wasted. We need the humanities not because they will produce shrewder entrepreneurs or kinder C.E.O.s but because, as that first professor said, they help us enjoy life more and endure it better. The reason we need the humanities is because we’re human. That’s enough.”
  • Lovely 1990 article by Psacharopoulos titled “Comparative Education: From Theory to Practice, or Are You A: \neo.* or B:\*. ist?” which closes with the line: “Comparative educators of the world unite – you have nothing to lose but your labels” #love


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