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Under communicative capitalism, the University, a vacuum of information within modern academia, can be considered a legitimate marketplace for the production, consumption, and circulation of new forms of capital—language, signs, information, and knowledge. By focusing on open-access communication practices, it is revealed that knowledge production within the University lacks both use value and meaning entirely. This research establishes communicative capitalism as pure ideology, which manifests in the University through a need for comprehensibility, a unity of struggle, signs of progress, and a neoliberal fantasy of transparent mediation between activism and academia, which all militaristically tightens capitalist control. Understanding the ideological functions behind the University and its image as a safe space encompassing alterity is crucial to recognize its relationship with the Radical Other—those excluded from the University and western capitalism writ large—and, thus, to forge more ethical forms of communication and representation. The proliferation of information, despite the consequential destruction of meaning, violently reduces the Radical Other to difference, or dangerously similar. Meanwhile, Radical Otherness cannot be made known to the University as a means of avoiding co-option nor can it be represented on the level of content as it transcends hegemonic language. Thus, communication practices must emphasize form. In complement, this research also explores poetic language as a mechanism of subverting the University’s need to know. In employing strategies such as mimicry, parody, onomatopoeia, and nontraditional grammar and sentence structures, poetic language may be capable of circumventing ideology and demarcating space for the Radical Other.



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The University Under Capitalist Ideology: Knowledge Production, Radical Otherness, and Poetic Language