Male marginalization revisited

Book Cover: Male marginalization revisited
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Male Marginalisation Revisited. In Gender in the 21st Century: Caribbean Perspectives, Visions, and Possibilities. Editors:  Barbara Bailey and Elsa Leo-Rhynie Editors. Ian Randle Publishers. Kingston. 2004. Pp 99-133.

The focus of this paper will be on expanding and refining the explanation of the phenomenon first advanced by me over a decade ago. It is important to note that male marginalization is not restricted to Jamaica or the Caribbean or to any one racial group or any particular society; rather, it is a universal phenomenon with different degrees of manifestation and different forms of expression. It is by no means a recent phenomenon but its current forms are new expressions related to the circumstances of contemporary society. I will employ both theory and history to support these positions.

  • Just over 17 years ago, on April 30, 1986, I had the honor to deliver the first Aubrey Phillips Memorial Lecture here on the Mona Campus of the University of the West Indies as a tribute to my late mentor and colleague, Professor Aubrey Phillips. The title of that lecture was: Marginalisation of the Black Male’. What followed was a controversy that has persisted until the present time. At that time, some credited me with identifying and highlighting a dimension of gender that had not previously been explored. Others accused me of obscurantism, being a male chauvinist parading in the guise of scientific research and of diverting attention from women’s issues.
    My approach was to ignore the inducements to become embroiled in a futile man versus woman debate but to continue to research the subject, being convinced that the phenomenon highlighted was not going away but rather would become more evident and widespread over time. It is fair to say that the passage of these 17 years has vindicated that position. The phenomenon is no longer in question. The current puzzlement centers on explanation. I, therefore, welcome the opportunity afforded me by this Mona Academic Conference, celebrating the tenth anniversary of the GenderStudies Unit, not only to revisit the subject of male marginalization but also to further advance the discussion of the subject by virtue of additional insights gained from exploration over these 17 years. Allow me to join in the celebration and commendation of the Gender Studies Unit for having reached this milestone in the journey and to wish for the unit even greater accomplishments through full exploration
    of gender issues as they relate to both women and men. In addressing the topic, Male Marginalisation Revisited, I am not going to recite empirical and statistical evidence highlighting aspectsrelated to the phenomenon such as:
    • More male babies are being abandoned than female babies;
    • More boys suffering from stunted growth than girls;
    • The growing tendency for boys to start school later, attend more irregularly, drop out more often, repeat more grades, have lower rates of completion of schooling and lower levels of achievement than girls on most indicators of educational attainment;
    • fewer males than females being enrolled in and graduating from tertiary institutions;
    • More boys and men becoming patients in psychiatric wards or psychiatric hospitals than girls and women;
    • More men being homeless than women;
    • More boys and men committing violent crimes than girls and women;
    • Much larger numbers of boys and men being incarcerated in correctional institutions and maximum-security prisons.

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Education/Training in the New Workplace

Some Introductory Remarks

In Human Resource Development and Workplace Governance in the Caribbean. Edited by Noel Cowell and Clement Branche. 2002. Ian Randle Publishers: Kingston Pp 37-43

This Chapter poses some basic questions about education, training and the new workplace.

These questions are:

  • Is the workplace the main aim of education and training?
  • Should education and training occur only prior to the workplace?
  • Is the new workplace axiomatic and education and training the problematic?
  • Where is the new workplace?
  • Are not jobs, work and virtual reality not more problematic than education and training?
  • Are the old distinctions between academic education and vocational training still useful?
  • Will the institutional framework for delivering education and training not change substantially over the next decades?
  • How should education and training be redesigned to give Caribbean people maximum opportunity to benefit from high-wage work that is and will be generated?
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Caribbean Regionalism, Education and Marginality

In, The Challenge of Scale: Educational Development in the Small States of the Commonwealth Caribbean. Editors Kazim Bacchus and Colin Brock. 1987. Commonwealth Secretariat: London. Pp 127-139

Small size, isolation, and dependence have been themes that have been employed in discussing educational development in small states of the Commonwealth. This chapter argues that these themes are defining manifestations of the more basic condition of marginality. As such the chapter discusses the general notion of marginality and considers its implications in education in the Caribbean over the previous 40 years. It critically analyzes the quantitative increase in educational provision in the region which basically makes larger the educational systems that were inherited but leaves many of its qualitative features in place. Important region-wide projects and well as the University of the West Indies and the Caribbean Examination Council have demonstrated the value of regional cooperation. The chapter concludes with the notion that the Caribbean was at the ‘cross-roads’ with education needing to be separated from partisan and insular politics and embrace regional cooperation as an imperative.

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UWI, MONA AND TERTIARY EDUCATION IN JAMAICA

Book Cover: UWI, MONA AND TERTIARY EDUCATION IN JAMAICA

UWI, MONA AND TERTIARY EDUCATION IN JAMAICA

The University of the West Indies, Mona and Tertiary Education in Jamaica.  In Revisiting Tertiary Education Policy in Jamaica: Towards Personal Gain or Public Good? Editors Olivene Burke and Rheima Holding. Ian Randle Publishers: Kingston. Pp 60-103: 2005

This Chapter on the University of the West Indies (UWI) Mona Campus and tertiary education in Jamaica, is situated within a volume revisiting tertiary education policy in Jamaica, especially with respect to its public and private benefits. Before delving directly into the subject, the Chapter steps back and examines, if even briefly, general issues. These include rapid, pervasive and disruptive technology changes; reactions to these changes including reaching back to traditional verities; the revival of historical enmities; and uncertainties because social cause and effect are usually so long separated in time such that the generation generating the cause is not around to address the effect and its consequences. Included in this general background is the relationship between society and formal education. Generally, education is intentional activity and tertiary education even more so. Hence, the teleological dimension becomes very relevant since purposeful action is taken within a framework of learned meaning.

Becoming more specific, the Chapter examines tertiary education in Jamaica with respect to its relatively recent history, dispersed policy apparatus, loose legal framework, relatively small size and increasing demand pressure consequent upon the expansion of secondary education and the constraints and expense of seeking tertiary education abroad. Also discussed are Government and development corporation agencies policies and financing of the different levels of formal education and the limited priority given to tertiary education.

The concluding half of the Chapter addresses the return on investment of tertiary education generally, and within tertiary, on different specializations offered at UWI. Detailed empirical data, in table and charts, document enrollments at all public tertiary institutions, annual recurrent and capital expenditures over the period 1975 to 2002/2003. Expenditures are compared in constant 1986$ Jamaican and US$. Studies are cited which show that tertiary education is both a public good and a private benefit. The critical question is whether the Government as the recipient of the public good or students/parents are prepared their fair share.

 

 

 

 

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Innovating on a shoe string

A WESTERN CARIBBEAN CASE STUDY

Innovating-on-a-shoestring-Errol-Miller

Innovating on a Shoe-string: A Western Caribbean Case Study describes the imperatives that impelled the Joint Board of Teacher Education, JBTE, Mona, in the late 1990s, to begin to design and implement innovations applying technology to its mission and mandate. The JBTE is a unique partnership in teacher education involving Governments, colleges training teachers, teachers’ unions in the Bahamas, Belize and Jamaica and the University of the West Indies, Mona Campus. The JBTE was set up in the mid-1960s to validate and guarantee standards. One of the main reasons for locating the JBTE within the structure of the University of the West Indies was to facilitate the application of research, development, and innovation to the achievement of desired standards. Essentially, the JBTE not only set and validated standards in teacher education in the Western Caribbean but also provided developmental assistance to colleges training teachers to meet the set standards.

The paper describes the main new challenges posed to the partnership in the late 1990s with respect to the modernization of instruction; upgrading quality related to the emerging knowledge society; the provision of on the job professional training to teacher educators, teacher trainees and teachers in service in schools; shrinking resources from Ministries of Education; globalization especially with respect to emerging common education standards at the tertiary level; and the need for Caribbean societies to become greater producers of knowledge.

In response to the demand to meet these challenges, as well as to find solutions to these very real problems, as they affect teacher education, the JBTE has identified information and communication technology as a critical resource and have embarked upon the following initiatives:

The Paper lists the six major technology solutions that the partnership planned, five of which came off the drawing board and were implemented. Of the five that were implemented three have been sustained. Of the two that were implemented but not sustained the Paper gives a detailed account of the development of a College Management Information System (College Manager) up to 2001. The intention was to design, develop and give the College Manager, free of cost, to all fourteen colleges training teachers within the JBTE Partnership. The Colleges, however, would have the responsibility to implement College Manager within their operations,

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