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Rethinking the University as a Context for Activism

Fite, Abigail (2024) Rethinking the University as a Context for Activism. Doctoral Dissertation, University of Pittsburgh. (Unpublished)

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In the progressive U.S. imaginary, the university is a bastion of activism. Through a case study of one university’s actions regarding campus activism, this dissertation re-examines this conception to suggest that certain university practices function instead to frustrate campus activism. In some circumstances, “best practices” like leadership development, administrative dialogue, and multicultural programming may reduce campus activism. Because administrators generally govern toward equilibrium, activism, as an upset, can be an effective lever for essential changes. When activism is diverted, so too are certain transformative potentialities. This dissertation grapples with these losses and suggests alternative pathways for university changemaking.


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Item Type: University of Pittsburgh ETD
Status: Unpublished
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Fite, Abigailalf189@pitt.edualf189
ETD Committee:
TitleMemberEmail AddressPitt UsernameORCID
Committee ChairGunzenhauser, Mike
Committee MemberPatel, Leigh
Committee MemberBermingham, Kate
Date: 17 May 2024
Date Type: Publication
Defense Date: 5 February 2024
Approval Date: 17 May 2024
Submission Date: 26 April 2024
Access Restriction: 2 year -- Restrict access to University of Pittsburgh for a period of 2 years.
Number of Pages: 296
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: School of Education > Administrative and Policy Studies
Degree: EdD - Doctor of Education
Thesis Type: Doctoral Dissertation
Refereed: Yes
Uncontrolled Keywords: higher education, university, campus, activism, organizing, change, counterinsurgency, repression, capitalism, revolution, administration
Date Deposited: 17 May 2024 13:16
Last Modified: 17 May 2024 13:16


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