Ivan Illich: Deschooling Society/Ritualization of Progress

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Illich sets out to "demythologize" school by addressing a series of myths about school.

The myth of institutionalized values[edit | edit source]

Illich claims that school produces a false need in the very young and that once we have accepted the myth that we need school we are then "... easy prey for other institutions." He suggests that schooling transfers responsibility from the self to the institution and that this leads us to an unquestioned reliance on the institutions of society, which we could infer Illich distrusts.

The myth of measurement of values[edit | edit source]

"In a schooled world the road to happiness is paved with a consumer's index."

In this section Illich claims that "personal growth is not a measurable entity" but that school tries to make it so by breaking up learning into subjects and prefabricated curriculums. This has the result of making people unaware of the advantages and benefits of "unmeasured experience", which because it is unmeasurable becomes threatening. Once people are 'schooled' into believing in the power of measurements they will accept all kinds of rankings, scales and indexes.

The myth of packaging values[edit | edit source]

A critique of curriculum production that likens it to an assembly line with the "distributor-teacher" who Illich suggests delivers the product to the "consumer-pupil". Illichs metaphor suggests that curriculum is the product that is marketed to a wide audience to justify the cost of its production. Mentions Parkinson's Law.

The myth of self-perpetuating progress[edit | edit source]

A kind of logic of progressing to higher and higher levels of "curricular consumption". Illich criticizes this kind of "open ended consumption" of schooling as an "eternal progress" that never leads to maturity and hinders any kind of organic development that could take place.

Ritual game and the new world religion[edit | edit source]

The coming kingdom: the universalization of expectations[edit | edit source]

The new alienation[edit | edit source]

The revolutionary potential of deschooling[edit | edit source]