Friday, August 26, 2005

The Underground History of American Education - read it online

I've wanted to read this book for some time - I just found the entire thing available online.

The Underground History of American Education by John Taylor Gatto

From the prologue:
     If I demanded you give up your television to
an anonymous, itinerant repairman who needed work you’d think I was
crazy; if I came with a policeman who forced you to pay that repairman
even after he broke your set, you would be outraged. Why are you so
docile when you give up your child to a government agent called a

I want to open up concealed aspects of modern schooling such as the
deterioration it forces in the morality of parenting. You have no say
at all in choosing your teachers. You know nothing about their
backgrounds or families. And the state knows little more than you do.
This is as radical a piece of social engineering as the human
imagination can conceive. What does it mean?

     One thing you do know is how unlikely it will
be for any teacher to understand the personality of your particular
child or anything significant about your family, culture, religion,
plans, hopes, dreams. In the confusion of school affairs even teachers
so disposed don’t have opportunity to know those things. How did this

1 comment:

  1. I'm about halfway through that book (and I have been for a while.... other reading has distracted me). It's scary to learn about the history of education. I think it also helps me to sort of step back from how accepted the idea of mass, compulsory schooling is in our culture and realize how odd it is.


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