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Towards Surveillance Education: An Investigation Into the Relationship Between Surveillance Capitalism, Education, and Identity
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This thesis is a philosophical investigation that tracks the increasing influence of surveillance capitalism and its relationship to changes in identity, behaviour, and the classroom to create surveillance education. Education is key in the behavioural development of students and a critical social environment in the development of self-identity. Surveillance capitalism’s practitioners could author student identity by controlling the feedback about behavioural expression in the classroom and create citizens who accept surveillance as a legitimate part of their participation in society. This places humans in the position of a simple natural resource to be stacked, sorted, and manipulated as Heidegger suggested. This thesis begins with an examination of Shoshana Zuboff’s book The Age of Surveillance Capitalism and traces the interconnected nature of these concepts. Zuboff’s arguments are refocused towards identity. An examination of how education is changing and aiding in the adoption of surveillance methods is then undertaken. This leads to the conclusion that humans are now a natural resource and that education plays role in this outcome. Possible solutions to change the course are suggested. Future areas of research are also proposed that will continue to shed light on the emergence and effects of surveillance education.