Presentation from LibertyCon 2018, Belgrade, Serbia.
Panels of Institute of Cryptoanarchy, author: Liora
Discussions about academia are often blurred in the current social norms of regulations provided by state or education system itself. This presentation will not discuss the norms of academia, but present the concept of anarcho-academism and reshape the narrative of academia and science in an anarchistic manner. The transforming role of crypto anarchy in the digital age is to encourage free thinkers to react and modify the existing narratives with innovations and ideas incorporated with liberty and individualism.
Curiosity is what moves science for centuries and anarchy itself is curiosity.
1. Academy as a potential
When it comes to the distinction between the role of academia and the importance of academia in life, we need to first make a difference between education and learning.
Education is a temporary process, the process of teaching, learning and collecting a different kind of knowledge which can be theoretical and practical, or both with a most formal manner. It can be delivered by different individuals, groups or institutions. In the various states, formal education is obligatory. The process of learning is a bit different. It is a part of an education process, but in most of the cases, it is an isolated process from education. Learning is one of the first processes in human life. Instinctive process with an integrated potential to create, teach and adapt to new conditions. Primarily driven by will for existence, learning as the process has much more potential to create an informal or non-formal knowledge for the individual, than education. Both processes are important, but in this case, learning has a much more validity than the formality of education. In a social manner, academia mostly represents the institution for gathering the formal knowledge, where pupils and students, after accomplishment gets a different formal title.
In a social manner, the view of academia is somehow incorrect. Reshaping the view of academia needs to create two approaches:
a) Academy as an institution:
In this segment, the academy is a simple institution for gathering the formal knowledge, mostly based as a state institution, where you have a strong narrative and simple structure of education, teaching and learning processes with various themes. In some cases, when it comes to themes, there is only one programme that you can learn or only one collegium where you can participate. The diversity of processes, in this case, are not fulfilled.
b) Academia as a human resource;
In this segment, the academy is living through the potential of human resources in it. It is a complex view where each individual creates various narratives, dimensions, and potentials to fulfill processes of education, teaching, and learning, based on a strong analytical and research dimension of various scientific, social and other awareness. Individuals are mostly driven by the potential of learning and motivation for success in learning.
By those two approaches, we can easily see that academia and academy are two different views on how education should look like in their potential. Today’s academia looks different from Plato’s academia based on meritocracy.
Education is not a simple process anymore, it is reconnected with a deep string to state and governmental institutions to reshape the society in a predominant narrative in one state. The true potential and meaning of academia are often blurred by factors that can make processes in a society dominantly based in the governmental sponsored educational programs. These factors are highly incorporated in transitional or post-conflict societies and can be recognized by emotional or propagandist methods of teaching in the field of subjects predominantly oriented to models of a national or ethnical group of subject, mostly incorporated with a strong religious vector. However, those factors are not exclusively found in transitional and post-conflict countries. Many democratic or social-democratic based models have those factors in a different shape.
One of the most recognizable factors is called the vectors of indoctrination. During the communist states, one of the predominant vectors of indoctrination was the subject of Marxist theory, where pupils and scholars did learning about the theory of Marxism (case study: Yugoslavia, 1945-1992). Today, we have various vectors where kids are learning theories based on dominant political or religious groups in one country. The complexity of vectors of indoctrination is that they are incorporated in a form of one model, which creates the ability of one-shot education based on single-minded propose - serving the state and society.
The second factor and one of the biggest problem with formal education is a model “One size fits all”. The students and pupils despite their individuality get the same potions of education. “One size fits all” is concentrated in all formal educations model with a potential to create a collectivistic manner by the contribution of different individuals.
Individuality in educational institutions, especially academia, is forgotten as the potential for raising the state of meritocracy. The whole education system and even the academy as the highest level of education is based on two terms: Critique and criticism.
Critique represents the collectivistic sense of theoretical approach to problems, where students and pupils, together with formal educators get a chance to make an abstract or express their view on subjects or themes that are often complex and very theoretical. The potential of critique is minor and it cannot be predominant in the academy, even if it truly is.
Criticism is the fluid concept of incorporated theory from critique and practice from reshaped solutions. Critique is only based on rethinking and theory, but criticism offers an innovative potential to solve the problems that critique seen.
2. Potential of crypto anarchistic approach in anarcho-academism
As I presented the core problems in academic and educational approach nowadays, I created the term of anarcho-academism.
Anarcho-academism is an approach of reshaping the academia in the manner of human potentials to recreate adequate potential to change the state of mind where critique will be substituted with criticism. Anarcho-academism is based on anarchy and liberty, just as cryptoanarchy, with a technology as the main tool. Nowadays, the potential of the technology is not to create a substitute for reality as it is often presented by mass media but to reshape and find solutions for problems that humankind has since the beginning. Even if we think that technology is not connected with the academy or formal education models, it is deeply connected with processes of learning. In the so-called “cybersphere”, cryptoanarchy has recreated the potential for education and research with a set of solutions for various problems that may be occurred by statism and indoctrination models. Liberalization of education and learning has started with an early effort of cypherpunks to reshape the digital security and make it more individual from state securitization narratives. Crypto anarchy has made that potential fluid and more plastic in the era of blockchain and cryptocurrencies, with a significant effort for liberalization of the financial sector. Crypto anarchy did transform the knowledge in the manner of decentralization and non-formal/informal learning.
By Internet, the process of learning and knowledge has made easier most of the processes for finding solutions.
In factors how did cryptoanarchy recreated the potential of anarcho-academism and all processes, we may find:
a.) Liberalization of information
With the liberalization of the information, comes the real innovation and research. Crypto anarchy did it via technology, anarcho-academism will do it in the academy. Censored, oppression and restrictions over the flow of information are mostly visible in the cybersphere, provided by legislation of governmental systems and security services.
b.) Abolition of the authorities in knowledge
When it comes to knowledge, the only authority should be a curiosity for research and learning, with a strong influence of ability to seek the solutions. In an academic manner, there is a strong cult and hierarchy of authorities based in elders of academia, who are not ready nor willing to participate in vectors of indoctrination as the processes which are truly connected to the institutions and not a human potential of students or pupils. One of the cultist things in formal education is reputation based on titles, where the highest title has the highest moral appreciation for presenting the ideas to society.
c.) Cryptoanarchistic/cypherpunk and hackers communities
In the core of cryptoanarchy and anarcho-academism is liberalization of innovations. In the new era for humankind, the Do-It-Yourself academies and learning institutions are in the form of non-governmental communities. In many academies, the word innovation is somehow prohibited. That narrative recreates the potential of DIY communities and academies where each individual, based on their will and potential, is able to create, share and participate in processes of researching and learning. Hackers communities are the true meritocratic place where information and knowledge are highly appreciated as the capital for future innovations and solutions.