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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A progressive and liberating read....., November 23, 2003
By 
Nadia555 (Sydney, NSW Australia) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Freedom and Beyond (Paperback)
John Holt's book "Freedom and Beyond" throws light on the contradictions, brutality, racism, inequality, and unfairness that are present in most standard schools today. Though this book was published in the early 70's and all of the statistics in this book would have changed since then, it's depressing to read that so little has changed regarding the teacher/student dynamic. This book is genuinely revolutionary, and realistic in it's approach. The author writes with great understanding and insight, and presents several anecdotes and observations about the cross-section of school's he has visited. All of the suggestions here are logical and positive. The only flaw I found in the book was that it presented such an unrelentingly bleak and cynical overview of school-life, and yet it provided no direct advice for what the average reader could do to mend these problems. John Holt certainly presents the issues very clearly, and harbours great contempt for what children are made to endure throughout their school years, but unless you're a teacher, principal, or are about to erect a school from scratch anytime soon, the book does tend to frustrate you and leave you feeling rather helpless. The book does cover a wide range of social issues, from poverty to employment, all of which, as John illustrates, are relevant to the getting of a good education. It helped me gain a greater understanding of the nature of children and their needs. I urge parents to read this book (particularly if their children are struggling within the conventional school system), and I'd also recommend it to teachers, as this book promotes learning that is inspired and varied, and suggests new ways to teach the young that prevent boredom.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Attitude Building, March 10, 2001
This review is from: Freedom and Beyond (Innovators in Education) (Paperback)
This is a book which has helped me develop an attitude for perceiving children. It and "The Continuum Concept" by Jean Leidloff, have both helped convince me how little of our unsolicited instructions children really need.
John Holt is one who takes 'freedom' to its limits, at least as far as children are concerned.
The change it brought in me: When I have the baby sitter's role with my kids, I try to do that which is of mutual interest to us (myself and the kids), or do something which I like while they're doing their stuff. However, I have an open door policy, and allow them to come up to me for any of their queries. Doing something which just interests my kid is defeating, as my frustration and resentment gets transferred through my tone or through my way of looking at them.
It would enable a person who always finds children to be messy, annoying, revolting and disobedient to see them as friendly, interesting, and transparent.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Holt deserves a much wider audience, October 9, 2010
By 
David D. Derauf (honolulu, hawaii United States) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Freedom and Beyond (Hardcover)
What a wonderful mind he had. An author I truly wish I cold have known. Seems he somehow rather naturally saw the world from a Gothean perspective, and as such his observations and writing style are so illuminating, so gentle, so filled with compassion.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars John Holt Freedom and Beyond, March 5, 2010
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This review is from: Freedom and Beyond (Innovators in Education) (Paperback)
If you want to understand WHY public education doesn't work anymore, this is the place to begin.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Explains freedom to this reader's mind., August 5, 2007
By 
A Reader (California USA) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Freedom and Beyond (Innovators in Education) (Paperback)
Transcends the school and the children within. Holt gives a voice to the bonds of common condition of man. Whatever the bonds, velvet or metallic, freedom is prevented. ...(In time, this reader will do this book justice.)

For now, just know that John Holt is one in a million as a writer. His thoughts and his words are magnificent. He's able to hit the high notes of thought several octaves above and beyond logic. For example, he points out the flaws of using certain words, i.e., STRUCTURED/UNSTRUCTURED.
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Freedom and Beyond (Innovators in Education)
Freedom and Beyond (Innovators in Education) by John Caldwell Holt (Paperback - November 6, 1995)
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