Deschooling Society () is a critical discourse on education as practised in modern economies. It is a book that brought Ivan Illich to public attention. Deschooling Society: Ivan Illich: In Deschooling Society (), his best-known and most influential book, Illich articulated his highly radical ideas about. School is the advertising agency which makes you believe that you need the society as it is.”.

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As examples of convivial institutions he gives; the subway and public markets.

What follows is a brief summary of the argument of the illkch. The worst aspect of this Illich was that people also learned to blame themselves for failing to achieve the impossible. I deschoooing agree that we should eliminate state education, as corrupted as it is, we need sockety rebel inside and out.

There is perhaps though a sense of grace and transcendence which he takes from his religious background; a quality of life that the priest working amongst the poor in South America might come to value. Illich is concerned with human relationships at a fundamental level.

There are pitfalls and shortcomings, I felt at times that some of his arguments and visions for the future educational environment resemble a right wing libertarian approach referncing Milton Friedman and advocating teachers auction off their skills?

He claims it is patently false to claim that most learning is the result of teaching. Increasingly while downplaying traditional authority the new left-wing elites are turning to more and more authoritarian measures. The highway system does not similarly become available to someone who merely learns to drive. Nonetheless he is skeptical of certain high tech goods and sounds similar to anarchist Karl Hess in calling for, what Hess called, “appropriate technology”.

Rather than changing the way we teach he says we should step away from schools altogether.

Please do not remove this message until conditions to do so are met. This suspicion is the shared characteristic of a new elite.

It remains a fundamental paradox of current transport policy that so-called private modes of transport require the massive public subsidy of a road deschoolung, whereas so-called public transport has been deregulated with the intention of getting its users to bear the deschooilng costs. By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. Against traditional classrooms and curriculum, Illich imagines ‘learning webs’, where computers would connect people who wanted to learn something to people who already knew it, forming tutoring pairings and affinity groups that meet in cafes and converted shopfronts.


It is a book that brought Ivan Illich to public attention.

In other places he also promotes the idea of learning vouchers given by the state to people to spend on any desdhooling of education they see fit. It came to mean a process rather than the plain knowledge of the facts and the ability to use tools which shape a man’s concrete life. He proposes new institutions of a convivial nature to replace the manipulative ones of the current schooling system. The space in educational institutions for non-exam focused learning seems to be small and shrinking, however.

Want to Read Currently Reading Read. In Puerto Rico, at the socjety Illich began studying the question in the late s, children we’ already required by law to have more schooling than the the state could afford to give them. Conversely, one of those old professors provided me with a useful insight Then again, this is just the specific case of a skill that is increasingly relevant to the job market; Illich would not approve of such emphasis I suspect.

It is chasing the myth of unlimited progress. Education came to mean the inverse of vital competence.

Deschooling Society

Finding inspiration in successful public school gardens. The majority will pay for schooling through tax but only an elite will truly benefit; schooling paid for by tax is regressive. Schools teach the need to be taught.

It is a fine balance between acknowledging that it is time to end the dream of scientific progress leading to the fulfilment of human demands — because this has got out of hand and has long since moved in the deschoolinng of manufactured demand — and sounding like an emotional champion of the harm that all science can do. A good educational system should have three purposes: I am in descjooling agreement with many of [his] wider arguments.

Review of Ivan Illich’s seminal Deschooling Society – The New Observer

The contrast is between a culture which promotes people as passive consumers of technological solutions provided by large, distant, corporations, for which school is a trainingand a culture which permits people to be active in finding solutions for their own problems. But deep down, I have always felt a little less than for not having a college degree.


Illich argues that institutionalized education allows schools to monopolize learning, which is harmful because schools fail to distinguish between learning and teaching. Moreover, open source software and Wikipedia demonstrate that learning and creation can thrive outside private monopolies. Thoughts and images from the Civil The user would identify himself by name and address and describe the activity for which he deschoolinf a peer. Further, by taking resources and goodwill mass public schooling stifles efforts that might otherwise be made in the community.

So technology could yet undermine the school system and encourage a much freer model of learning, albeit in a manner that in Illich could not hope to foresee. And this monopoly of schools over the very definition of education, Illich argued, not only inhibits alternatives but also leads to lifelong dependence on other service monopolies.

Once these become blurred, a new logic is assumed: Does spciety believe that in today’s world, the abolition of shcools would not result in immediate increases in business activity which would take on many of the schools’previous functions? Institutional wisdom tells us that children learn in school. And everywhere it develops the habit of self-defeating consumption of services and alienating production, the tolerance for institutional dependence, and the recognition of institutional rankings.

Modern man thinks that man i,lich institutions to survive. Illich’s pessimistic message on the future school and institutional forces did little to create any change in society during his time.

Review of Ivan Illich’s seminal Deschooling Society

Universal education through schooling is not feasible. Under this system, people can abdicate themselves of responsibility dsechooling their own growth, relying on teachers to impart them with knowledge. This critique applies equally to both the so-called developed and the developing nations but in different ways. His imagination is “schooled” to accept service in place of value. His imagination is “schooled” to accept service in place of value.