Last year, South African universities faced one of the most violent structural crises of the past 30 years. Students challenged something that had long been taken for granted: that they should have to pay for their tertiary education since it is an industry that obeys free market principles. The push-back against rising tuition fees did not take place in isolation. It has led to a wider student movement focused on decolonising universities at the economic, racial, curriculum, spatial and staff levels. This movement raises two big questions: can academic institutions fulfil the needs and aspirations of a new generation of students who are reluctant to accept the status quo? And to what extent can and should universities be in charge of solving the societal problems around education, not only in SA but also elsewhere in the world? It seems self-evident that universities cannot simply ignore what is happening on their campuses. They cannot disregard their students. Therefore, they have...

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