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ERIC Number: EJ793060
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2008
Pages: 19
Abstractor: Author
Reference Count: 22
ISSN: ISSN-1474-0222
Agonistic Struggle: Master-Slave Dialogues in Humanities Supervision
Grant, Barbara M.
Arts and Humanities in Higher Education: An International Journal of Theory, Research and Practice, v7 n1 p9-27 2008
Hegel's master and slave is a significant archetype for graduate research supervision. The master-slave relation vividly exemplifies the hierarchical bond that ties supervisor and student together. Such a confronting view of supervision provides a counterbalance to contemporary emphases on equality between supervisor and student. In what follows, I use Zali Gurevitch's interpretation ("Dialectical dialogue", 2001, "British Journal of Sociology") of Hegel's master and slave ("Phenomenology of Spirit", 1807) to analyse an extract of supervision dialogue between a supervisor and a Masters student in the Humanities. My analysis shows the mundaneness of the master-slave relation in action. This mundaneness derives from supervision's institutional underpinnings and contributes to the relative invisibility of the master-slave relation as an influential dynamic. In closing, I argue that this investigation usefully draws our attention to the third player in supervision, the thesis, and that master-slave dynamics may have both disturbing and helpful effects for supervisor and student. (Contains 5 notes.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Opinion Papers; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A