On Progress & EducationnRichard Hoggart: An English Temper:nEssays on Education, Culture andnCommunications; Oxford UniversitynPress; New York.nMichael W. Apple: Education andnPower; Routledge & Kegan Paul;nBoston.nby Gordon M. Ptadln1 he self-confident voices of thenliberal culture would have us all believenin progress. Through their rhetorical excessesnand their exclusionary stance theynhave tried to create the illusion that theynalone know what progress is and thatnthey have a monopoly on both the visionnof the good life and the values needed tonbring it about. This claim is a simplenabuse of truth. True conservatives arendeeply concerned with the values of lifenbut they follow a more cautious path tonbring them about.nProgress presumably relates to thenfuture. But debates over differing notionsnof progress are really about the past,nabout those values that one locates innprevious generations, as one attempts tonimagine and shape a future that willnsatisfy our needs. A society that includesnthe idea of progress as part of itsndynamics is not damning its previousnmanifestations, but merely acknowledgingnthat work still remains to be done tonimprove the conditions of life for itsnmembers, thus increasing the odds thatnit will adequately anticipate tomorrow.nProgress, in other words, need not implynan attack on the existing value stmcturenof a society; rather, it can point to ourncontinuing efforts to realize more widelynthe values that we have inherited andnthat have shaped our past and presentnachievements. Viewed in this way,nchange need hold no fatal contradictionnDr. Pradl is with the Department ofnCommunication Arts and Sciences atnNew York University.n^6inChronicles of Culturenfor a tme conservative position as long asnthe value center holds, as long as thenmaterial accomplishments do notndestroy the spiritual basis for the originalnvitality of that culture.nLiberal culture refuses to acknowledgensuch obvious truths because it thinks itncan maintain its hegemony by denyingnthe very foundations of the society thatnallowed its rise in the first place. Inntouting progress, liberal culture’s realnconcern is to brainwash us into thinkingnthat because not all of our society’s actionsnin the past have been defensible, itsnvalue stmcture must be at fault, and thusnexposed as a sham. Consequendy, it relendesslynattacks the values, standards,nand institutions that have shapednAmerica’s greatness. And in this lifeand-deathnstruggle for control of thenfiature, the social institution that, exceptingnthe family, best embodies our regenerativencapacity, is education.nIf the world that we pass on to ournchildren no longer reflects all that wenhold dear, then to a large extent we willnfeel that our efforts have been in vain. Sonwe constmct institutions that help to insurenthat future generations will fundamentallynperpetuate our present characteristicsnas a people. One of the keynsttategies used to insure such survival isnschool organization and management.nHow education is defined and ordered innAmerica, which ideology shapes ournknowledge, attitudes, and abilities, oncenthey have been determined, goes a longnway toward clarifying the deep stmcturesnthat bind us together as a civilization.nThat conservatives are in danger of losingnthis battie of definition and order inneducation should come as no surprise:nwhat should starde us, however, is hownour present plight is illuminated bynvarious left-leaning commentators whonthemselves hold no tmck with the liberalnculture. By suspending abhorrence forntheir political-economic agendas we cannuse their eyes to see more clearly hownschooling all too often fosters withinnnnstudents a negative vision of America’snvalues and achievements—how individualnautonomy is denigrated, dependencynencouraged, and standards leveled.nin An English Temper: Essays onnEducation, Culture and Communications,nthe British literary aitic and educatornRichard Hoggart addresses annumber of issues relating to standardsnand distribution in education. Hownshould people behave in educational settings,nboth teachers and students? Howndo we monitor the mass media which sonpowerfully dictate our images andnvalues? How should we both think ofnand assist the dispossessed amongst us,nespecially in terms of literacy and legitimacy?nAlthough Hoggart claims identitynwith the left, his real values grow out ofnhis university ttaining, which was elitistnin the best sense of that term. There lienhis real loyalties, for there he learned thenpower of respecting and supporting thenquest for individual achievement. Such anposition grew inevitably out of his literaryntraining:nFor all its looseness and lack of analyticalnrigor, the English tradition innliterary-cultural criticism has alwaysnbeen concerned with making a deeplynhuman critique. It has kept a firmnfocus on individuals, on what happensnto people.nThis concern for the individual and hisnnascent powers aligns Hoggart againstnliberal culture. He recognizes, for instance,nits master strategy for anesthetizingnthe populace by endlessly assaultingnProtestant ethics, especially in “attitudesnto competitive work and to the sexualnlife.” Tliroughout his essays he dramaticallyncaptures our sense of alienation andnimpotence in the face of oiu inaeasir^glyncenttalized and technologized social institutions.nMore and more we are on thenoutside looking in on the crucial decisionsnthat affect our lives. And, frighteningly,nwe seem on the verge of evenn