In 1979, the French philosopher, Jean-Francois Lyotard published his influential book The Postmodern Condition. In this text, he forecasts that universities and
the knowledges they produce will experience profound ideological shifts as capitalist societies emphasise the market principles of commercialisation and commodification. In the 1984 English translation of Lyotard’s work he writes:
Knowledge is and will be produced in order to be sold, it is and will be consumed in order to be valorized in new production. . . . It is not hard to visualize learning circulating along the same line as money, instead of for its educational value or political importance; the pertinent distinction would no longer be between knowledge and ignorance, but rather, as the case with money, between ‘payment knowledge’ and ‘investment knowledge’ – in other words, between units of knowledge exchanged in a daily maintenance framework (the reconstitution of the workforce, ‘survival’) versus funds of knowledge dedicated to optimizing the performance of a project.