In his new book, Radical Hope, one of Australia’s most original and provocative thinkers turns his attention to the question of education.
Noel Pearson begins with two fundamental questions: How to ensure the survival of a people, their culture and way of life? And can education transform the lives of the disadvantaged many, or will it at best raise up a fortunate few? Pearson argues powerfully that underclass students, many of whom are Aboriginal, should receive a rigorous schooling that gives them the means to negotiate the wider world.
He examines the long-term failure of educational policy in Australia, especially in the indigenous sector, and asks why it is always “Groundhog Day” when there are lessons to be learned from innovations now underway.
Noel Pearson is a lawyer and activist, and director of the Cape York Institute for Policy and Leadership. He has published many essays and newspaper articles.
His first book, Up from the Mission (2009), is a collection of essays that charts his life and thought from his early days as a native title lawyer to his position today as one of Australia’s most influential figures.