School is the advertising agency which makes you believe that you need the society as it is.
School has become the world religion of a modernized proletariat, and makes futile promises of salvation to the poor of the technological age.
Les enfants sont par définition des apprentis, et apprendre est l'activité humaine qui nécessite le moins de manipulation par autrui. La majeure partie de l'apprentissage n'est pas le resultat de l'instruction. Elle serait plutôt le résultat d'une participation dans un environnement chargé de sens.
An ever growing part of our major institutions’ functions is the cultivation and maintenance of three sets of illusions which turn the citizen into a client to be saved by experts...The first enslaving illusion is the idea that people are born to be consumers and that they can attain any of their goals by purchasing goods and services. This illusion is due to an educated blindness to the worth of use-values in the total economy. In none of the economic models serving as national guidelines is there a variable to account for non-marketable use-values any more than there is a variable for nature's perennial contribution.
Today, one must either be isolated and cut off, or a carefully guarded, affluent drop-out, to allow one's children to play in an environment where they listen to people rather than to stars, speakers, or instructors. All over the world, one can see the rapid encroachment of the disciplined acquiescence that characterizes the audience, the client, the customer.
We are the witnesses of a barely perceptible transformation in ordinary language: verbs which formerly expressed satisfying actions have been replaced by nouns which name packages designed for passive consumption only -- 'to learn' becomes 'to accumulate credits'.
Skill teachers are made scarce by the belief in the value of licenses. Certification constitutes a form of market manipulation and is plausible only to a schooled mind. Most teachers of arts and trades are less skillful, less inventive, and less communicative than the best craftsmen and tradesmen. Most high-school teachers of Spanish or French do not speak the language as correctly as their pupils might after half a year of competent drills. Experimentsconducted by Angel Quintero in Puerto Rico suggest that many young teen-agers, if given the proper incentives, programs, and access to tools, are better than most schoolteachers at introducing their peers to the scientific exploration of plants, stars, and matter, and to the discovery of how and why a motor or a radio functions.
In fact, healthy students often redouble their resistance to teaching as they find themselves more comprehensively manipulated. This resistance is due not to the authoritarian style of a public school or the seductive style of some free schools, but to the fundamental approach common to all schools-the idea that one person's judgment should determine what and when another person must learn.
Most people, throughout history, haven't learned one language to the exclusion of another. You learn to speak differently to a peasant and to a shoemaker. You speak differently to your mother, who comes from Burgundy, and to your father, who comes from Swabia.
Schools that are freely accessible allow the organization of certain specific learning tasks which a person might propose to himself. Schools, when they are compulsory - as we see at this moment in the United States - create a dazed population, a 'learned' population, a mentally pretentious population, such as we have never seen before.
Once the Third World has become a mass market for the goods, products, and processes which are designed by the rich for themselves, the discrepancy between demand for these Western artifacts and the supply will increase indefinitely.
Healthy people are those who live in healthy homes on a healthy diet; in an environment equally fit for birth, growth work, healing, and dying... Healthy people need no bureaucratic interference to mate, give birth, share the human condition and die.
Modern medicine is a negation of health. It isn't organized to serve human health, but only itself, as an institution. It makes more people sick than it heals.
I consider the indiscriminate propagation of self-help to be morally unacceptable... self-help is the opposite of autonomous or vernacular life.
The college and university systems, at least, have become like television. There's a bit of this and a bit of that and some compulsory program with its components connected in a way that only a planner could understand.
School divides life into two segments, which are increasingly of comparable length. As much as anything else, schooling implies custodial care for persons who are declared undesirable elsewhere by the simple fact that a school has been built to serve them.