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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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Teaching, it is true, may contribute to certain kinds of learning under certain circumstances. Illich’s most direct criticism is at the idea that formal education solves problems.

My mum recommended this short but extremely thought-provoking book to me. It also advocates a generalization of skills making pupils more able to acquire different skills and as such potentially offering a practical alternative to the concept of division of labor and specialization. Schole, the Greek word from which ours derives, means leisure, and true learning, according to Illich, can only be the leisured pursuit of free people. Public compulsory education ovan certification-before-employment is a failed social experiment.

Some clues are given in his talking about a culture which promotes re-use and repair of tools. So; the demand if manufactured to follow what can be produced.

I don’t agree that we should eliminate state education, as corrupted as it is, we need to rebel inside and out. The worst was likely from tenured PhD’s with degrees in Education. What, after all, is the relation between schooling and learning, if any? Nov 16, Szerdahelyi Laszlo rated it really liked it.

Deschooling Society – Ivan Illich – Google Books

It would provide opportunity for free expression: In Illich’s time Nixon formed a committee focusing on education costs which he attacked stating “The President’s Committee for the study of school finance should ask not dfschooling to support or trim such increasing costs, but how socety can be avoided”. We hope to contribute concepts needed by those who conduct such counterfoil research on education — and also to those who seek alternatives to other established service industries.


To do so, I have chosen the school as my paradigm, and I therefore deal only indirectly with other bureaucratic agencies of the corporate state: H2O and the Waters of Forgetfulness extends this project into a history of “stuff. Schools teach the need iplich be taught. Schools will never produce uniformly educated, happy, well-adjusted, work-ready people, because the world is complex. Ivan Illich was an Illidh philosopher, Roman Catholic priest and critic of the institutions of contemporary western culture and their effects of the provenance and practice of education, medicine, work, energy use, and economic development.

Jun 24, Phil Lensi rated it it was amazing.

My library Help Advanced Book Search. The job market depends on making skills scarce and on keeping them scarce, either by proscribing their unauthorized use and transmission or by making things which can be operated and repaired only by those who have access to tools or information which are kept scarce.

Not to go where one can go would be subversive. Institutional wisdom tells us that children learn in school. By designing and packaging knowledge, schools generate the belief that knowledge must be acquired in graded and certified sequences. The claim that a liberal society can be built on a compulsory and coercive ritual is therefore paradoxical.

Institutional wisdom tells us that children learn in school. This seems profoundly unfair and illogical: Jul 06, Melanie rated it it was amazing Shelves: Education became an intangible commodity that had to be produced for the benefit of deschoo,ing, and imparted to them in the manner in which the visible Church formerly imparted invisible grace. Illicy someone with a healthy disdain for modern education it opens the door to a multitude of alternative ways of thinking about truly free and open education.

Relevant discussion may be found on the talk page.

The Alphabetization of the Popular Mind carries Illich’s project forward into the area of literacy, as does his most recent book, In the Vineyard of the Text Most people learn best by being “with it,” yet school makes them identify their personal, cognitive growth with elaborate planning and manipulation. Just a moment while we sign you in to your Goodreads account. It suddenly seemed very cyclical, reproducing the importance of instruction.


Illich himself is a polymath who speaks at least six languages fluently and who writes regularly in three of these English, Spanish, and German ; his books have been translated into more than 15 other languages. He sees schooling, the mass, compulsory, public schools as providing an induction into a way of life which is consumerist, packaged, institutionalised and impoverished. This critique applies equally to both the so-called developed and the developing nations but in different ways.

This is typically true very nearly as much of progressive schools as it of more traditional schools. Wouldn’t it be interesting if charter school opponents led sessions at the WA Charters conference in May?

Deschooling Society Quotes

Speaking as someone in the 23rd grade, too much education is useless credentialism that serves to indebt the ambitious working classes. This suspicion is the shared characteristic of a new elite. But, whatever echoes of one kind find in Illich he is not bound to any tradition. For example on lifelong learning Illich writes: Rise Up for Students All of our kids, ready for life. Let’s start each school day with an acknowledgment of the Indigenous people’s land we occupy. The feeling of being an accomplice to this obsolete idea of compulsory entrapment of kids in a factory like institutions.

The core point changed my life: Illich contrasts a world which pre-dated classical Greece, a world of hope, with the world of classical Greece wherein man learned to build and fit into institutions which delivered predictable results, a world of managed expectations.

Since the initial publication of “Deschooling Society” in there has been little change to the structure of public school and centralized institutions, at least in the United States.