Neoliberalism and other factors in the breakdown of society | Letters

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George Monbiot concludes that, in response to the crisis that lies behind Brexit and Trump, what we need is “a new story of what it is to be a human in the 21st century” (The deep story beneath Trump’s triumph, 14 November). What we actually need is a revolution in our institutions of learning.

In order to solve the grave global problems we face – climate change, population growth, extinction of species, war, inequality and the rest – we need governments to act appropriately. But governments are unlikely to be much more enlightened than electorates. Hence we require the public to have a good understanding of what our problems are, and what we need to do about them. That in turn requires that universities are devoted to intelligent public education about our problems and how to solve them. At present universities, devoted primarily to the pursuit of knowledge, fail disastrously to do what is required.

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