Education Reform, Iranian Style

I have already written about my total lack of understanding for UNESCO’s decision to award the hosting of the 2010 World Philosophy Congress to Iran.

"What do we need social sciences for?"

But as so often, the Islamic Republic of Iran does not avoid providing plenty of opportunities for the rest of the world to wake up and rethink its decisions: Iran will impose restrictions on its universities, not allowing any new courses in 12 social sciences and reviewing the existing courses in these subjects. Affected are among others law, psychology, political science and – as a special thanks to UNESCO for letting Iran host the World Philosophy Congress that is supposed to celebrate free thinking and encourage the exchange of ideas – philosophy. To nobody’s surprise, two subjects that will be scaled back and exposed to even tighter government control are human rights and women’s studies.

As a reason for this intervention, the Iranian government explained that these subjects “are not in harmony with religious foundations and are based on Western thoughts“.

The brain drain from Iran will continue…

Update: UNESCO has indeed withdrawn from the events scheduled in Iran.

About Andreas Moser

Travelling the world and writing about it. I have degrees in law and philosophy, but I'd much rather be a writer, a spy or a hobo.
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10 Responses to Education Reform, Iranian Style

  1. Pingback: Education Reform, Iranian Style, by Andreas Moser « The Levant

  2. Congratulations on getting published in the Ithaca press! I fully agree with you on this topic. I cannot fathom how so many nations around the world will talk about the problem that is Iran, and will argue for some kind of action – only to disappear into the background, or speak of “finding common ground” when actions are put forth by one country or another. It doesn’t help that many politicians in America are still smarting from the 1979 Iranian hostage crisis, resulting in the US being the first country to posit any form of action, thus leading to the inevitable cry of the decadent west versus the Muslim world. Perhaps the brain drain will proceed quickly enough to leave Iran without sufficient expertise to run its’ nuclear reactors, rendering that problem moot.

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  8. teageegeepea says:

    There are way too many philosophy majors in the west. China explicitly killed off that degree due to the lack of jobs for graduates, and I thought that was a good idea.

    • Allowing freedom of expression, free speech ad free political and academic activities would be another way for China to allow philosophers to find jobs.

      I don’t know how to determine if there are “too many” philosophers in the West. I still see much more lawyers and bankers than philosophers.

  9. Pingback: After Obama’s re-election, what is next for Iran? | The Happy Hermit

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