The Alienated Academic

The Struggle for Autonomy Inside the University

  • Richard Hall

Part of the Marxism and Education book series (MAED)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xxviii
  2. Richard Hall
    Pages 1-32
  3. The Terrain of Academic Labour

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 33-33
    2. Richard Hall
      Pages 35-67
    3. Richard Hall
      Pages 69-97
  4. The Terrain of Academic Alienation

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 99-99
    2. Richard Hall
      Pages 101-134
    3. Richard Hall
      Pages 135-160
    4. Richard Hall
      Pages 161-186
    5. Richard Hall
      Pages 187-211
  5. A Terrain for Overcoming Alienation

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 213-213
    2. Richard Hall
      Pages 215-239
    3. Richard Hall
      Pages 241-266
  6. Back Matter
    Pages 267-273

About this book


Higher education is increasingly unable to engage usefully with global emergencies, as its functions are repurposed for value. Discourses of entrepreneurship, impact and excellence, realised through competition and the market, mean that academics and students are increasingly alienated from themselves and their work. This book applies Marx’s concept of alienation to the realities of academic life in the Global North, in order to explore how the idea of public education is subsumed under the law of value. In a landscape of increased commodification of higher education, the book explores the relationship between alienation and crisis, before analysing how academic knowledge, work, identity and life are themselves alienated. Finally, it argues that through indignant struggle, another world is possible, grounded in alternative forms of organising life and producing socially-useful knowledge, ultimately requiring the abolition of academic labour. This pioneering work will be of interest and value to all those working in the higher education sector, as well as those concerned with the rise of neoliberalism and marketization within universities.

Richard Hall is Professor of Education and Technology at De Montfort University, UK, and a UK National Teaching Fellow.


Marxism Knowledge and the Means of Production Alienation and the Individual in University Self led learning Autonomy within Higher Education neoliberalism in higher education marketisation of higher education academic labour Marxist concept of alienation

Authors and affiliations

  • Richard Hall
    • 1
  1. 1.De Montfort UniversityLeicesterUnited Kingdom

Bibliographic information

  • DOI
  • Copyright Information The Editor(s) (if applicable) and The Author(s) 2018
  • Publisher Name Palgrave Macmillan, Cham
  • eBook Packages Education Education (R0)
  • Print ISBN 978-3-319-94303-9
  • Online ISBN 978-3-319-94304-6
  • Buy this book on publisher's site