Valences of Interdisciplinarity

The modern university can trace its roots to Kant's call for enlightened self-determination, with education aiming to produce an informed and responsible body of citizens. As the university evolved, specialized areas of investigation emerged, enabling ever more precise research and increasingly nuanced arguments. In recent decades, however, challenges to the hegemony of disciplines have arisen, partly in response to a perceived need for the university to focus greater energy on its public vocation—teaching and the dissemination of knowledge.

Valences of Interdisciplinarity presents essays by an international array of scholars committed to enhancing our understanding of the theoretical underpinnings and the practical realities of interdisciplinary teaching and research. What is, and what should be, motivating our reflections on (and practice of) approaches that transcend the conventional boundaries of discipline? And in adopting such transdisciplinary approaches, how do we safeguard critical methods and academic rigour? Reflecting on the obstacles they have encountered both as thinkers and as educators, the authors map out innovative new directions for the interdisciplinary project. Together, the essays promise to set the standards of the debate about interdisciplinarity for years to come.

Table of Contents

Table of Contents
Cover 1
Contents 8
Acknowledgements 10
Introduction: Interdisciplinarity, for What? 12
PART I: THEORY 40
1 The Menace of Consilience: Keeping the Disciplines Unreconciled 42
2 The Telos of the Good Life: Reflections on Interdisciplinarity and Models of Knowledge 58
3 Interdisciplinary Models and Dialectical Integration: A Proposed Model of Integrated Interdisciplinarity 84
4 Globalization and Higher Education: Working Toward Cognitive Justice 108
5 The Law of Non-contradiction: Dialectic and the Possibility of Non-propositional Knowledge 132
6 Interdisciplinarity, Humanities, and the Terministic Screens of Definition 148
7 Integrating Interdisciplinary Studies Across the Humanities and Social Sciences 176
PART II: PRACTICE 200
8 Ecological Thinking as Interdisciplinary Practice: Situation, Silence, and Skepticism 202
9 Michael Haneke: The Spectatorship of Self-RefleXivity and the Virtual Gaze in Benny’s Video and Caché 224
10 Transdisciplinarity and Journal Publishing 242
11 Gender, Women’s Rights, and Religion: An Interdisciplinary Case Study 262
12 Literacy Studies and Interdisciplinary Studies: Reflections on History and Theory 284
PART III: PEDAGOGY 320
13 Teaching and Enjoyment: A Lacanian Encounter with the Master Signifier 322
14 “One code to rule them all . . .” 336
15 Decolonizing Teaching and Learning Through Embodied Learning: Toward an Integrated Approach 354
16 From Integrated to Interstitial Studies 378
List of Contributors 402