Sean Micheal Morris’s article, which revolves around the distinctive definition of pedagogy as a relation as well as process, discusses various aspects of digital pedagogy which ends with a few questions. One of them is, what happens when the learning is removed from the classroom and exposed to the entirety of digital landscape? Let me reflect on this question, especially in the wake of the pandemic that almost defined our form of life today. This short comment is not about the digital technologies per se, but about how the ongoing process of digital invasion over the classroom precipitated by the pandemic restructured the sensibility of learning/being in the classroom.
It is however obvious that the notion of classroom being a physical location has been entirely changed into a virtual and affective location- which is to say, the classroom has become about a particular sensibility in regard to the mode of education. This sensibility is formed through the dissolution between home and school. There was a very strong sense among students that the school/classroom is a certain kind of antithetical to the home. Which is to say, both of them kept maintaining an exclusive attitude to each other. You cannot act like you are home when you are at your classroom. However, this sense has been complicated when your home itself has become a classroom in the age of pandemic. Now let’s think about how this construction (of the classroom) takes place. As home is primarily affective, that is, we constantly try to recreate ‘home’, an affective space, within the house, it is entirely reasonable to keep the ‘classroom’ away at the school. But now that the classroom came after you where you sleep by exploding your ‘home’. I found myself frantically engaged in creating a classroom inside the house in a way that is ensured not to infect my ‘home’. It is Walter Benjamin who wrote about how the emergence of the division between ‘office’ and ‘home’ has been a turning event in the creation of the industrial labor class in 19th century Europe. However, I do not dare to claim that such kind of class configuration has been entirely created/restructured in the pandemic age, but it is however to acknowledge that the sense about classroom has been underway to a radical change.
I feel that this needs to be properly identified and articulated in order to address the changing sensibilities/structure of feeling in the wake of the digitization of the classroom that is at work now, instead of, maybe, putting up some superficial measurements of how to do digital classroom.