The Indian as a Labour Commodity

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CHAPTER THREE Theoretical Perspectives: Teacher Organisations


Heyderbrand ( 1983: 78 ) points out that teacher organisations are associations of teachers grouped together around the pursuit of specific goals. Through association, teachers are able to achieve for themselves or for others objectives beyond those they could achieve individually.
According to Rainey & Milward ( 1983: 131 ) the existence of organisations is considered to be an aspect of the division of labour in society. Organisations are sub-units of the wider social structure, carrying out tasks that are required by or acceptable to a wider population. This means that they must, in their operations, stay within the overall legal and value framework of the larger society, though, as with any other unit in the social division of labour, there will be some social values with which they will come into conflict, which they will contest, and which they will help to change. Van Niekerk ( 1992: 229 ) points out that in order for teacher organisations to have a positive impact on education they should have both the responsibility and the desire to contribute to and be involved in the « broad » educational field.
Steyn ( 1985: 80 ) notes that the concept 11 teacher organisations11 includes teacher associations and their federations or unions. Teacher organisations operate with a voluntary membership. Most of them are formally organised and have some form of infra-structure which enables them to carry out their functions. Vilardo ( 1992: 01 ) points to the historic position of teacher organisations in South Africa. Vilardo ( 1992: 02 ) argues that established teacher organisations are those that have their origins before the Soweto Uprising of 1976 and that have historically sought for and received recognition from the State as the legitimate representative of teachers.
Hence these teacher bodies are also ref erred to as 11 recognised11 teachers organisations ( see par 6.3.1. ) . On the contrary, the concept 11 emergent 11 teacher organisations apply to those organisations which emerged in the 1980’s as part of the broad democratic movement and strongly identified themselves with the politics of the African National Congress ( ANC ) . These organisations are also referred to as 11progressive 11 teachers’ organisations, due to their close identification with the democratic movement and because they involved themselves in political struggles against the apartheid State ( see par 6.6. ) . Reeves ( 1994: 90 ) maintains that universally and especially in South Africa, there is intense debate as to whether teacher organisations should constitute themselves as professional associations or as trade unions. A further dilemma arises as to whether professional associations and teacher trade unions respond in the same manner towards educational matters. In order to answer the above problematic circumstances it becomes necessary to first establish the location of the teacher in the social spectrum. This is relevant to the development of a theory of teacher organisations.

The Class Location of Teachers

Attempting to determine the position of teachers along the social class spectrum is not only significant but problematic. It is important in that it can point out why teachers decide to join certain professionally oriented teacher bodies rather than union-based teacher organisations or vice versa. Also, the socio-economic character of teachers as a result of their class location can at the same time reveal the nature of teacher organisations.
The question of whether teachers are workers in the same sense as industrial workers is relevant. On one hand, they are reliant on wages for their subsistence and some theorists, such as Moore ( 1995: 51 ) and Wright ( 1976:05-08 argue ) that, therefore, they are simply part of the working class. On the other hand, teachers like the petty bourgeoisie have far more control over their work than industrial or ordinary clerical workers. They also enjoy generally better wages and work conditions, and are generally seen as professionals with some social status.
Also, teachers do not work for capitalist employers and are not directly subordinated to the needs of capital like workers in capitalist enterprises. On this basis, Hope and Goldthorpe ( 1987: 36 ) contend that teachers should be seen as occupying a middle class or « petty bourgeoisie » position.
Moore ( 1995: 86 ) points out that Marxist theorists argue that the teachers’ objective class location is dependent upon the process of surplus value of production. They contend that a new class which is ref erred to as the new petit bourgeoisie, the new middle class or the professional-managerial class was organised in the late or monopoly capitalism stage which began near the turn of the twentieth century. This is concurrent with the consolidation of industry and the growth of the State as a central legitimating agency. The new petit bourgeoisie, for Marxists, is defined as an intermediary class between the two great camps in capitalist society, namely, labour and capital. Carlson ( 1988: 159 -160 ) asserts that, generally, the new petit bourgeoisie collective political function is to supervise the appropriation of surplus value in the production process, help extract more surplus value from labour, and indoctrinate workers, or future workers with values, such as discipline and respect for authority which are essential to the appropriation process. Included in this class, among others are shop-floor supervisors, managers, efficiency experts, accountants, clerical workers, engineers, bureaucratic planners, technicians and teachers. Teachers supervise discipline { see par 6.4.2. ) and indoctrinate « future workers » in the service of capital { see par 5.4.2. ) • Members of this class serve as agents of the interests of capitalism and do not add anything directly of value to what is produced by human labour, hence their work cannot be considered to be « productive ». Instead, along with management and capital, they live off the surplus value which is created by labour. Marx { Cole 1988: 14 ) did not foresee the emergence, within capitalism, of a massive middle class that would mediate between the extremes and seek to create a stable social order. Walker { 1979: 19 ) and Wright { 1976: 05-08 ) suggest that the fact that a person is fulfilling the teaching function puts him or her in a relationship which perpetuates elitism, paternalism, the control of knowledge and the corresponding passivity and resentment which constitutes significant class barriers between teachers and working class children { see par 6.5.2. ). Reeves { 1994: 67) points out that during the apartheid era in South Africa, the notion of teachers belonging to a middle class was reinforced by the State.
This was important for the transmission of the ideology of apartheid by stable, conformist middle class teachers who were essential for the maintenance of the apartheid State.
The idea that teachers could identify with working-class aspirations was intelligently manipulated and rejected by the State.
Wright’s { 1978: 13 ) analysis of social class, reveals that this middle class is in a contradictory position in society. Moore { 1995: 92 ) points to this tension by suggesting that, recently, middle class occupations are becoming increasingly proletarianised. The status and esteem of white-collar employment has been reduced as their relative income advantages have been eroded. Clerical staff are no longer rated alongside managerial levels and do not identify with their superiors as they did previously. The lifestyle and sense of identity of such workers is becoming indistinguishable from those of manual workers. Reeves { 1994: 91 ) contends that, likewise, teachers who traditionally occupied marginal middle class positions are increasingly becoming proletarianised, whereby their status is relegated to that of the worker.
In South Africa, with the dismantling of apartheid, there was no need for the State to purposefully sustain a middle class. Hence, this factor, together with low salaries and poor work conditions explains why many teachers increasingly identify with the working class. Marx ( Elster 1986: 184 ) predicted that capitalist society would eventually be torn apart by the conflict between a greedy bourgeoisie and a vast, rebellious proletariat. With the middle class in apparent decline and with the
extremes diverging further from each other, one can conclude that this Marxist vision fits the future of many countries.
Walby ( 1989: 26 ) argues that attempting to locate male and female teachers together within a class model is misguided. She argues instead that completely separate categories are needed for men and women, as she takes the view that the idea of ‘class’ implies some form of common position shared by both genders, and this cannot be accepted as an accurate understanding of the position of women. Feminist theorists like Delphy ( 1984: 14 ) have rejected all such attempts at classification based on occupations, on the grounds that they reflect patriarchal relationships which exclude the crucial area of women’s experience. Feminists contend that women are oppressed mainly because of their gender. In South Africa many women were doubly oppressed as a result of their gender and their historic racial position.

CHAPTER ONE Introduction 
1.1. Significance of the Investigation
1 2. The Aims of the Study
1.3. Selection and formulation of the Problem
1.4. Formulation of the Hypothesis
1 . 5 . Source Review
1.6. Delimitation of Research
CHAPTER TWO Historical Research Methods in Education 
2 .1. Research Paradigms
2 . 2 • Methodology
CHAPTER THREE Theoretical Perspectives: Teacher Organisations 
3.1. Introduction
3.2. The Class Location of Teachers
3.3. The Dilemma of Professionalism and Unionism
3.4. Reproduction Theory
3.5. Resistance Theory
3. 6. Resume
CHAPTER FOUR Theoretical Perspectives: The Indian Community 
4.1. Introduction
4.2. The Indian as a Labour Commodity
4.3. The Indenture System
4.4. Resistance to Capital
4.5. National Liberation versus Class Struggle
4.6. The Effect of Culture on Class Consciousness
4.7. Resume
CHAPTER FIVE 1925 – 1958: A Period of Contradiction: Early Signs of Reproduction and Resistance 
5.1. In troduc ti on
5.2. The Emergence of Teacher Organisations
5.3. The Contribution of NITS to Middle Class Ideology
S.4. The Hegemony of Capitalism
5 • 6 • Resume
CHAPTER SIX 1961 – 1982: The Period of Hegemony 
6.1. Introduction
6.2. The Relationship Between Apartheid and Capitalism and it’s Effect on Teacher Organisations
6.3. The Consolidation of Hegemony
6.4. The Effects of Hegemony
6.5. The Hegemony of the Curriculum
6.6. The Ideology of Professionalism
6.7. Resume
CHAPTER SEVEN The Period 1984 – 1992: Struggles 0£ Resistance and Struggles £or Transformation
7.1. In troduc ti on
7. 2. Struggles of Resistance
7.3. Struggles for Transformation
7.4. Resume
8.1. Theoretical Issues
8.2. The Reproduction Thesis
8.3. The Resistance-Transformation Antithesis
8.4. Significance of the Research for Educational Theory
8.5. Related Areas of Research

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