1st Edition

Scripted Bodies Corporate Power, Smart Technologies, and the Undoing of Public Education

By Kenneth Saltman Copyright 2017
    134 Pages
    by Routledge

    134 Pages
    by Routledge

    From drugging kids into attention and reviving behaviorism to biometric measurements of teaching and learning Scripted Bodies exposes a brave new world of education in the age of repression. Scripted Bodies examines how corporeal control has expanded in education, how it impacts the mind and thinking, and the ways that new technologies are integral to the expansion of control. 

    Scripted Bodies contends that this rise in repression must be understood in relation to the broader economic, political, and cultural forces that have produced an increasingly authoritarian society. This book details how these new forms of corporeal control shut down the possibility of public schools developing as places where thinking becomes the organizing principle needed to contribute to a more equal, just, and democratic society.


    1. Smart Drugs: Corporate Profit and Corporeal Control

    2. The Austerity School: Grit, Character, and the Privatization of Public Education

    3. Biometric Analytic Pedagogy: Control of Students and Teachers and the Assault on Thinking

    4. Corporate Educational Reform and the Making of the New Forced Consumption: Educational Technology and the Destruction of Teachers as Public Intellectuals

    5. Learning to Be a Psychopath: The Pedagogy of the Corporation



    Kenneth J. Saltman is a Professor in the Department of Educational Leadership at the University of Massachusetts, Dartmouth, where he teaches courses in the Educational Leadership and Policy Studies PhD Program.

    Saltman’s book takes us into new and frightening areas of educational excess and repression that focus on the body, and explores their impact on the possibilities of teaching and learning – that is, the erasure of thinking. This is a nightmare world of apps, performance-enhancing drugs, and big business. Drawing on a wide range of theoretical resources and up-to-the-minute data, this book is both terrifying and analytically stunning. -- Stephen J. Ball, Institute of Education, University of London

    In Scripted Bodies, Ken Saltman offers an engaging analysis of how pedagogical strategies easily become repressive. Saltman focuses on how "new" pedagogies manipulate students’ corporeal selves, an essential counterpoint to the ubiquitous psychological and behavioral orientations to cognitive and social-emotional aspects of learning and development. This book breaks down the mind-body distinction that permeates pedagogy, and situates pedagogy within a socio-political context defined by corporations and technologies. Saltman ends on a hopeful note of resistance to recapture genuine democratic conditions for schooling and beyond. -- Sandra Mathison, Faculty of Education, University of British Columbia

    This is possibly Saltman's masterwork. It's a heart-pounding and eye-opening account of the discipline-and-punish pedagogy that our children endure in nearly all walks of life. This is no theoretical tale, but a keenly observed documentation of the horrifying but real ways schools control children's bodies in order to control their minds.--Marc Bousquet, author of How the University Works, and professor of Film and Media, Emory University