Episode 13 - Michael A Peters - Post-Truth, Fake News and Philosophy in the Pandemic


Alan: Hello everyone and welcome to In Limbo Conversations! Today, we have with us Dr. Michael A. Peters, a Distinguished Professor at the Faculty of Education at the Beijing Normal University. He's also an Emeritus Professor in the Faculty of Education at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. His research interests include a wide variety of fields and mainly, I think, education, philosophy social policy, and within philosophy- he tends to focus on the significance of, I think, contemporary philosophers like Nietzsche, Wittgenstein, Heidegger and a lot of work on education as well- and I think his current major projects include work on distributed knowledge, learning and publishing systems, and very interestingly, open education. So do check the links out in the description to know more about Dr. Peters and his work and so thank you Michael for joining us today! It's really nice to have you here.


Michael: My pleasure.


Alan: So we'd like to talk to you about your work and it's very interesting, especially nowadays with the pandemic situation. This whole Post-Truth era and how everything mixes up together - it's a big mess and I think works like yours and people that you collaborate with - all of this work sort of helps us untangle this mess a bit. So we're hoping that we can talk about that and see what insights you can give us. I'd like to start with this idea of post-truth. You have this very interesting viral theory of post-truth. So before we get into that, could you just tell us - I know it's a bit wide of a question - but could you tell us what you think post-truth is and what exactly it means in today's world, how it functions?


Michael: Okay, so the term post-truth was mentioned by the Oxford English Dictionary back in 2017 when they included it as part of the lexicon and the concept there was really an attempt to show how our understanding of truth has changed dramatically under the influence, in particular, of social media. So when you talk about truth and you talk about the history of truth regimes and the history of truth. In that respect, you need to pay attention to forms of transmission, to regimes and also, of course, to the development of media and the way in which we've shifted from largely a truth system in the public sense that was based on industrial style newspapers to now, to of course.. the internet after 1992 and the phenomenal growth of social media and forms of social media. So instead of getting a kind of vertical veracity - I guess from sources of well-respected journalists under the old industrial model, which really was expert journalists who said to themselves that they were pursuing the truth and they had a craft called journalism that they followed - now, we have a set of horizontal languaging, messaging, a different kind of form of communication, where people share not only ideas, not news any longer per se. The commodity of news has pretty well disappeared. What we have is a bunch of other stuff - photographs, Facebook - well, we know what goes on Facebook - and these are large aggregation forms of media owned by the very, very large American and Chinese companies. High-tech companies, let's say they're oligarch-ish. They really control the news now. They control the ability to receive the news. So the old concept of truth, let's say, in the public world as it relates to publishing, really is going by the board. Industrial newspapers are closing down unless they can find a kind of digital solution to the problem. Now we face a kind of vertical communicative structure, rather than a structure from-expert-to-public, in shaping public ideas. And that's become very dangerous because there's no such thing really as truth. There are no ways of maintaining or sustaining or checking the veracity of statements in the same way that you could in the industrial model. And I say from a philosophical viewpoint, this maps back onto my interest in Friedrich Nietzsche, in particular, to Wittgenstein and let's say in more philosophical terms, what I would call non-foundational accounts of truth. But also we would say in relation to Heidegger, you go back to the pre-philosophical conceptions of truth. In relation to the Greek concept of "aletheia" or "alathea” which means closest to, in Greek, to our concept of truth. I mean, we find for instance, in the Odyssey the word aletheia is used as Heidegger's famous analysis of it, in this case and we have in the Odyssey the phrase "Then, verily child.. I will tell you the truth". Well that goes back a long, long way, part of the old tradition, before the institutionalization of philosophy and we have a concept of truth here which is more ontological than the epistemological. And I think that's correct. Although the epistemological may be simultaneously part of the practices of truth, going back some way. But certainly there's an ontological view and it is the ability to tell the whole truth. In the Homeric version of truth, it is a kind of responsibility to represent the whole story of something that's happened.

What we have is a bunch of other stuff - photographs, Facebook - well, we know what goes on Facebook - and these are large aggregation forms of media owned by the very, very large American and Chinese companies. High-tech companies, let's say they're oligarch-ish. They really control the news now. They control the ability to receive the news. So the old concept of truth, let's say, in the public world as it relates to publishing, really is going by the board.


And our court of law in the West, when you say "I promise to tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth" - really, we have a kind of..we have a kind of historical anchor here going back many centuries. So I think we have to tell a story, historically about the emergence of truth, different truth regimes. So I'm very influenced by Michel Foucault particularly when he talks about "Parrhesia" and truth practices going back to the Greeks. But I.. also, from my point of view, Foucault spent a lot of time talking about truth, the conditions of the practice of truth, of the truth-teller. As opposed to in the analytic tradition which has much more kind of preoccupation with truth conditions, with the old platonic true, justified belief kind of concept. From my point of view, and the Wittgensteinian point of view really- is I don't think you can talk about truth without talking about lies. But the two seem to me to be interlocking parallel kinds of language games.


Alan: Truth doesn't come up without lies on the side. We won't have “truth” if there weren't any lies I guess..


Michael: Yeah absolutely, absolutely. When you examine the practices, the everyday practices of truth and the way in which they change their character. To take one example, the Game of Confession. Here is something that comes to the fore in the third to fifth centuries- as the concept of self practice, self cultivation, practices spring into view and the monastic way of life begins. But I think that we also need very much to look at the history and the practices of lying in public life. And when we do that, what we see are some very disturbing trends, which we can describe under the term post-truth and many of them - we talk about the politics of post-truth. Many of them refer to the way in which politicians and others that seek to influence forms of government can massage the message, to use MacLuhan's kind of term here, for political gain and for their political purposes. And I think what we're seeing now, in the U.S., with Donald Trump is an extreme example of exactly this phenomenon. This is very dangerous for the world because it muddies the water so much that it's very difficult for people to do instantaneous fact checking about what he says and you see the technique not just of the big lie but of the many big lies, , so people who have looked at his claims, they find that he has made thousands of lies- from the moment he took office. I wrote a paper around that because it's a significant educational problem, I think. It's a problem for philosophers for sure - but they are just a small group of people who live on the fringes of society. I'm saying it's central to public life - it's central to an educated public, in particular and to everybody. So we need to recognize the threat to public life that it poses.


Alan: So you've brought up three really interesting points out there- two of them which I would like to talk about going forward- one being the idea that big companies do own a lot and do control a lot of the media and they do sort of manipulate the messages, so I would like to come to that later and what you just said as well, in the end but, before that- this idea that you have- the viral theory of truth and like you mentioned, Wittgenstein, Foucault - you follow them in that.


Michael: Yeah.


Alan: Like you also mentioned they do seem- they are anti-foundational in a sense- they are more contextual like, you said, going away from the analytics which tends to like be acontextual and like you said, look for just the truth conditions. But your viral theory of truth- post-truth seems to move along those anti-foundational contextual lines saying that maybe, the nature of truth changes as we go along depending on which era we are in and what we are in. We tend to term it "post" truth, as if there was this big chunk of truth before, as you really pointed- it wasn't the case that there was a big unchanging chunk of truth as such. There were many truths and then now, what is different about this post-truth era that wasn't there before when regimes of truth, as you say, were changing? What was separate about that?


Michael: Okay. We have to look very carefully at technologies of truth. I'm both a materialist and a historicist- that's my broad orientation and I think we have to look at regimes of truth as they emerge. What we're facing at the moment, since 1992, has been this kind of networked development of social media which came to be recognized in the 2000s as a regime of post-truth. Let's say one of the differences with the industrial new- networks you had a sort of top-down model of truth and it was basically large corporations that ran them. But there were some basic conventions for being able to check facts and it was a slower medium. And after that change and that process of digitalization, what we see is a very different kind of news emerging in the- as I say, horizontal rather than vertical, as one example- when you talk about sources and authorities and and and so on. And also truth doesn't figure much, if at all, in the post-truth regime. It still can be determined according to the historically evolved, traditional means that we use to investigate the truth in a court or in a detective investigation or in the classroom. There are methodologies that we learn, we follow and these are from the constituent point of view- they are social practices that we have evolved to do. When it comes to social media the concept of truth doesn't really figure greatly here. What does figure though is something that really is important, from a social and epistemological point of view and that is the the rise of conspiracy and conspiracy thinking and, , I think, , it behoves educators and philosophers to begin to look very carefully at this huge rise of conspiracy thinking. And I think, , we see a huge increase in the number of conspiracies. And we might also say a form of government that has arisen called- government by conspiracy. And again here, the government by conspiracy- there are some very, very interesting examples. I think that's where I used the term some years before. Before the current coronavirus came into view, I used the term "viral modernity"- because I think that there are two forces- cultural and biological being. On one hand, we would say biology and in particular new biology- I'm talking about genomic science- and on the other hand, I'm talking about information science and the way in which these two have come together. And I think they have come together in different ways- they share some features- everybody knows we can talk about computer viruses and that functions in relation to an analogy. But I think that being a historicist and a materialist, I also want to look at the emergence of a kind of viral modernity where these two systems shape cultural evolution. They are the most powerful forces going forward- new biology and information science. This is why I like to talk about capitalism in terms of bio information. I wrote a paper called “Bioinformational Capitalism” for a journal- Australian Journal called Thesis Eleven. In a sense, it's a form of political economy really. You see them develop- biology and information- into bioinformational capitalism. And the outstanding example here is Craig Venter. Craig Venter who is the venture capitalist biologist, who was the first to map the human genome and is now the CEO of a company called Human Longevity Incorporated, where he's using new biological and genomic science- selling it to the rich- really to extend their lifespan. So I think that's kind of my operational paradigm here really is the bio-informational paradigm.


When it comes to social media ,the concept of truth doesn't really figure greatly here. What does figure though is something that really is important, from a social and epistemological point of view and that is the the rise of conspiracy and conspiracy thinking and, I think, it behoves educators and philosophers to begin to look very carefully at this huge rise of conspiracy thinking.


Alan: Like you pointed out, bio-information and capitalism- you have this paper and that- I think by the end, you talk about how that can transition into a sort of transhumanism and in your paper on bioinformational capitalism, you talk about how this might eventually sort of transition into this transhuman idea- that's what they seem to be working towards- like you also mentioned about the startup that you said that the company that works for longevity- but there is also another part which kind of connects to what you mentioned before- which is this big media who has the power- who controls the media spaces but there’s the big overlap with the companies that also harness your information. Nowadays, you have a lot of information harnessing- sometimes even biological information harnessing. So, there is another side of the information in this and there is a negative non-positive scientific as well which connects to this whole idea of post truth and how it works. So, how do you see this idea- there is a rich section of the world which owns social media- all of this, they also have this information and they also have our information in our house and they seem to be playing this post-truth game a lot more than anyone else?


Michael: Yes. In terms of this regime, we have the emergence of global players in a way we haven't seen before. We talk about the emergence of the Big Five- Facebook, Amazon.com in America and of course, similarly in China, there is Tencent, Alibaba, WeChat and so on. These are very very big interconnected global systems. Actually, they are two parallel systems that don't meet. Not really. They don't meet- Google is not in China . It may be one day- who knows but at the moment, the Chinese are very happy developing their own digital systems. But you're right - , the downside here is that democracy is part of that kind of past era to do with industrial media. We haven't figured out what democracy looks like in the new digital era. People are very suspicious of the way in which companies like Facebook can sell the data, especially personal data, of 87 million people. And they can upset the apple cart when it comes to elections, as they did in the UK, at the Brexit election. So I think the seriousness is to see this as an interconnected whole and also to recognize the huge dangers to the way in which national democracies operate. Now, we don't seem to have the same interconnectedness as information capital and these systems can be used to depose and to elect various authorities. And I think this upcoming election, with the US, which everybody is focused on now, is going to be quite an interesting and interesting example of this. But we've seen what Twitter politics means. Twitter politics. We know what that means and really it is something that progresses through muddying the water because you can say something and by the time somebody's checked that, it's already gone out to a large number of people and you don't have time to fact check it and the way that you did it with industrial style media- it's instantaneous and immediately, you move on. And what does it do- it harnesses and works on the prejudices of the people. Except let me say that the Christian Right would accept pretty well anything that Trump said. And so, the concept of truth doesn't really get off the ground here. The concept of evidence, of testing claims, of being able to engage- let me say-in the rationality game, the language game of rationality or the language game of truth- these practices now have changed so dramatically. When you look at it from a discursive point of view, you've got to say- "Look, the language game of truth now and the practice that we're engaged in- it has dramatically changed and we've got to recognize what those changes are" And while I was trained as a philosopher at Auckland University and I did my PhD on Wittgenstein, I was also a teacher- I thought, not just that it was easy to get a job, an education perhaps but also it was more important- because you're dealing with some really tricky issues now. So, I think that the concept of conspiracy and conspiracy thinking reminds me of Gregory Bateson. In particular, "Steps towards An Ecology of Mind"- he's a great inspiration, particularly, when he says "There is an ecology of weeds too" and by that, he means there is an ecology of error and error repeats itself in the system. So, we don't really know how to deal with that situation. Not yet- we're grappling with it.


...I think that the concept of conspiracy and conspiracy thinking reminds me of Gregory Bateson. In particular, "Steps towards An Ecology of Mind"- he's a great inspiration, particularly, when he says "There is an ecology of weeds too" and by that, he means there is an ecology of error and error repeats itself in the system. So, we don't really know how to deal with that situation. Not yet- we're grappling with it...




Alan: Yeah, hopefully. We don't really see it going anywhere. I mean, in the present sense, unless there's a radical rethinking like- perhaps you're trying to do or many other thinkers are trying to do. Sort of rethink the whole idea of this, what truth means and how to deal with this. I think like you brought up - the biggest problem seems to be- there's this flooding of information and you're not able to verify any of it. And that seems to be like the biggest problem that there is. It's not even that there are lies or that there are .. half truths and all of these different practices. The problem is verification and evidence- I think evidence also forms a big part of your work. You talk about how it hinges on the problem of evidence. If you had something to say about that, you could.


Michael: Look, the traditional Platonic view here is quite useful. Not for the true, justified belief conditions of knowledge. They don't apply to information. So there's no truth condition, no belief condition, there's no justification condition, okay? So, it might apply to knowledge. But the true, justified belief analysis helps us greatly with trying to distinguish between information and knowledge. Because disinformation is still information. Let me say- other forms of misinformation like deliberate misinformation- it's still information. But we've moved from kind of truthful regimes really- from industrial media to digital systems and these digital systems are information systems and information systems don't really fulfil or you can't really apply traditional philosophical criteria from the epistemological tradition to them. I mean- there's no belief conditions, there's no truth condition and there's no justification condition. There is just a kind of cybernetic rationality working there and it's a global one and as you also mentioned, the amount of information is- there's some law about it doubling every so many years. The massive amount of information out there is huge and we're moving into data intensive science, so it's actually changing. It's also changing the status of science and education so I think you could talk about algorithmic science and also let's say, forms of science that operate on quite different practices from that don't involve a knowing subject. They are algorithm-derived forms of data analysis. And that's a very big step forward too because, when you talk about truth generally - speaking the fallback position is to talk about science as the embodiment of rationality. And now, that kind of paradigm is up for scrutiny.


Alan: I was going to ask you about education but you mentioned a point about that about algorithms- it reminded me of, since you also worked there, about China and how they seem to not just be leading the way in that department with relation to algorithm and harnessing data and information, bio-information in a sense and putting that to use in a lot of ways- you've been there and I think you've worked there for a long time. To connect that to sort of the biopolitics of a citizen living in the world and their reaction, the different reactions that you have to the pandemic from say, someone like China who leverages all of this power and information and algorithmic data that they have versus the rest of the world which prides itself on freedom but cannot really tackle problems the same way that China managed to. I don't know if it's a good thing, bad thing but there seems to be a difference between how you can approach problems depending on what sort of information you have and what you do with it especially with the human and the human body and our lived experience- so, what was your experience out there in China? What do you think is, like, different about them? And how do they use the information?



Michael: We're facing escalating tensions between the US and China. Not just trade wars but technological wars. And these wars emanate from, not only a paranoid racist ideology against China. And you can prove that through data analysis of many of the Tweets that have been made and so on. But the US and the White House understands they've been caught napping and the Chinese have invested billions over the last decade into algorithmic science, deep learning and so on. All those areas- really which are the digital technologies that now lead science. I prefer to use a term that Jean-François Lyotard uses - "Technoscience". I think the term technoscience which Lyotard doesn't invent, actually comes from a Belgian philosopher who first used the term and I use it as well because I don't think we're dealing with science per se any longer. We're dealing with something called technoscience that operates differently. It's a different set of practices. I think Chinese understood what the game was and invested, as I say, billions of dollars. They lead in all areas of digital technologies. And I think even with fully automated systems, in relation to factory production but also social systems, we can see two distinct parallel technological systems that the world is currently made up of- the American one and the Chinese one. And frankly, I really like WeChat- I use it all the time. I prefer it to Facebook. Now, and I think the real source of difficulty here - of tensions between the US and China is because America really wants to slow China down and they are really very worried about the dominance that Chinese have in these new areas of technology. Not only information science technology but also in genomics and the life sciences. So- how they deal with it- It's kind of like- when you look at covid-19 and the various responses by, democracies on the one hand and communist states on the other. Let me say the political scientists must be relishing the comparison because what we see is that with a strong central state, there is a way of enforcing social distancing that citizens understand and they can bring these pandemics under control quite quickly. And although the Chinese- there were some hiccups in the early release of information and I did not investigate that. It could have been local, provincial. Communist Party officials who wanted to cover up this or cover up that. But once it went national, we saw complete control of this phenomenon at a street level. A kind of- in the same way really that Foucault actually informs us that the plague was handled many centuries ago. Ultimately comes down to if you isolate, then you're isolating the virus. And you're stopping the spread of it. Now I think what's really kind of interesting is that you have this group of people on the far right who want to demonstrate their freedoms at a time when solidarity is required, when the good of the community as a whole needs to be considered. Now, I'm thinking about the kinds of dilemmas faced by people like Anthony Fauci in the United States when he opposes a President like Donald Trump who likes to personalize everything, how much he can say- in a scientific way that actually contradicts his policies. Well we're seeing the results of complete mismanagement within the largest and (in Trump's way,) the best democracy in the world. Well, they haven't really handled it very well at all and now, epidemiologists at Johns Hopkins University suggest that we might see, by January, 415,000 deaths in the United States alone.



I'm thinking about the kinds of dilemmas faced by people like Anthony Fauci in the United States when he opposes a President like Donald Trump who likes to personalize everything, how much he can say- in a scientific way that actually contradicts his policies. Well we're seeing the results of complete mismanagement within the largest and (in Trump's way,) the best democracy in the world...



Also we're seeing that the virus is also really cutting a swathe. In Yemen, for instance where there are no social distancing procedures at all . And then, let's say in some African countries, in Bangladesh, in India- very high and we're looking at the second wave and third wave. And we're looking at the way in which the virus can change. Now it's hitting younger people as well as older people. There's an interesting paper that I should mention by Anthony Fauci and one of his colleagues David Moser I think, published last month that said- "We have entered the era of pandemics" , and the implication of this with a world population approaching the 10 billion mark. With overcrowding, with the way in which our exploitation of nature is chopping down all the forests- in the Amazon and elsewhere. With other forms of environmental degradation, we are setting ourselves up for pandemics in the future. Of course, at the moment, we see three or four of these new viruses every year, these novel coronaviruses operating. In some sense we're heading to one million deaths globally. The Spanish Flu of '18. We have been- let's say- the management of the virus has differed according to the political system quite dramatically, very quite dramatically. And our ability to work together globally has been impugned; it has been broken. Again- Donald Trump and the U.S.have changed their tune and robbed the World Health Organization of funding and the World Health Organization here is a product itself of a kind of new cold war. And how does it, how does an organization like that, that Žižek calls, he calls this organization communist? I'm not sure that I would want to say that and I'm sure that the World Health Organization also would be upset to hear his description. But what do they do? Well, they utilize the system in terms of a concept of "openness" to share scientific data as soon as possible- Well you put together that wonderful bibliography that you sent me of just the philosophers talking about the virus. But when you look at science, the scientists across a number of related fields- we are talking about tens of thousands of scientific papers and most of the big publishers who always want to put science behind a paywall are now making open access. So open access is part of this deal and it's als- it's part of a new series, a new kind of "knowledge ecology" that enables people to cross-check. So, openness is one of those fundamental global values that enable us to share knowledge. Like in using the digital systems, but with some kind of respect for empirical truth. I think that’s a major step forward and I really do stand for- I mean I've written lots of papers and books around openness as a fundamental kind of value in relation to science, in relation to knowledge economy. I call it "knowledge socialism", rather than "knowledge capitalism" because when you talk about peer-review basically, this is the ability of the community. I mean and even in some long-haul sense of the community of scientists getting it right in the long term.


Alan: But if I was to sort of say, this kind of moves into this idea that you have about education and when you talk about openness and about open access and that's part of your thinking about education. But also if you were to connect it to this whole post-truth, the barrage of information, misinformation, disinformation. And so, just this is my final question that I would like to talk about, because I think it sort of crystallizes the problem. Like you mentioned, it's not just for philosophers, or a certain section of society. The larger implications are wide with the education of humanity as a whole. Education - you have to think about it very differently from how we thought about it before. This whole thing just changes. Just finally- what are your thoughts on education in this particular situation - the post-truth scenario and like you said with openness and all of those things? Is that how we have to move forward? With an open sort of..open access? openness?


Michael: Yeah, I think- this is a great argument for including philosophy at school level. We need to be able to approach these questions from the philosophical way- we need to teach kids really how to think philosophically. What a claim is. What is evidence? What is the history of evidence? What's the history of science? And I've got to say, one of the features of the current regime is that we've seen the huge growth of the far right, of which- white supremacism of Donald Trump is this outstanding example. And alongside that we've seen the huge increase on social media of hate speech and hate groups. So we need to understand the philosophy of hate here. That's a great thing for schools to look at. The head of the UN recently sent a tweet concerning the way in which the United Nations was very upset at the growth of hate speech on the media. And we also, in New Zealand, we're a pretty open society, but we have our elections coming up very shortly. We have a party called Advanced New Zealand, which is a really conspiracy party. They think the ability to manage the virus is actually a communist plot- Absolutely! Because epistemologically we need to understand the structure of conspiracy and kids need to understand this as well. How do you approach this stuff if it happens on social media? Here's the thing. I came across one flat-earther who was a member of this new political party and she's reported in the press - this is her understanding of flat-earth - she said, "Look we're spinning and the earth is spinning at so many thousand kilometers an hour. How come we don't spin off? ? How come people just don't spin off?" Well, she had part of the explanation there! That the earth actually is revolving at a considerable speed, but she never- she really didn't have the concept of gravity to help her understand the absurdity of the claim that she was making. So not all conspiracies are irrational. When journalists investigated Watergate, they were tracking a conspiracy and it turned out to be a real conspiracy and their exposure of it actually led to Nixon having to resign. So I don't hold the view that all conspiracies are irrational and I think that some of them do have rational elements to them. You can have false and true conspiracies. But I think that we have a duty to equip kids who have grown up in the social media world, to come to term- to be able to appraise and come to terms with these claims, these very dangerous claims, that really diminish the space for argument for deliberation and for assessing the truth of what people are saying.





I think that we have a duty to equip kids who have grown up in the social media world, to come to term- to be able to appraise and come to terms with these claims, these very dangerous claims, that really diminish the space for argument for deliberation and for assessing the truth of what people are saying..





Alan: That was supposed to be my last question but you mentioned something that really interested me, made me think- When you give the example of the flat-earthers or how they think, they say. And you said that okay, this person didn't seem to have the complete concept of what gravity means and what it implies. If I were to go back to something you said in the beginning, very beginning about post-truth and how, about how truth is moved from something that was complete, sort of whole truth or complete truth into something that's a little more fragmented nowadays. Do you think education is then in a sense just the job- not just - but mainly the job of filling in these gaps that we seem to have, because of our new sort of media consumption?


Michael: No, I don't think so. I think some of it is deliberate misinformation. Now, we do face a new conjunction of power of politicians with the big global media systems and also forms of algorithmic analysis that allow certain claims to be perpetrated that are clearly false, but that people believe them. So, that's a problem not only for me but also for- it has huge implications for democracy because we can become the pawns of these systems. And I think that when you take the catalyst element into account as well, then you have the use of personal data that is aggregated without you ever having a say on it and it can tell- it can predict , ontologically it can predict your moods. What you're willing to buy. It can plug into your identity claims and be seriously manipulative. So, all of that - our curriculums- we've introduced media studies recently, but we also need philosophy in schools and I think we need also, let me say, political economy because I think those two need to go together. So that's what I would say in relation to education - , a critical view of the environment that people find themselves in. And there are good sides to it as well, which I mean, the openness and the sharing of information. Critical pedagogy can be based on those as well. That's one way of breaking a kind of circle based on conspiracy thinking. And so I think that's really important but we haven't really got around to thinking about systems of pedagogy and systems of education that are different from the old industrial systems. We're still trained and schooled according to the old industrial logics and we need to learn how to move beyond that.


..a critical view of the environment that people find themselves in...we haven't really got around to thinking about systems of pedagogy and systems of education that are different from the old industrial systems. We're still trained and schooled according to the old industrial logics and we need to learn how to move beyond that..




Alan: All right, thank you so much Michael! I think that's all the questions that I have now.

It was very interesting and quite a lot of good ideas that definitely helped, like I was saying in the beginning, untangle a lot of this mess. So, thank you very much.


Michael: Okay, nice to talk to you Alan.


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