Giorgio Agamben and the Abandonment Paradigm: A New Form of Student Diversion in Public Higher Education

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Publication Date

Winter 2013

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This article proposes a new paradigm to understand recent government policies that pose new barriers to student participation and divert students out of public higher education. We explain how the classic diversion paradigm, exemplified by Clark (1960) and Brint and Karabel (1989), is unable to account for this new form of student diversion. We also show how Agamben’s conceptualization of the “state of exception” and “the camp” offers a foundation for a new “abandonment paradigm” that explains the significance of policies diverting students out of public higher education and onto a threshold where their lives are increasingly uncertain and precarious.

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Citation / Publisher Attribution

Review of Higher Education, v. 36, no 2, p. 235-254