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Unschooling (Kindle Single) [Kindle Edition]

Astra Taylor
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)

Kindle Price: $1.99

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Book Description

"Are schools social levelers or do they reinforce the class pyramid by tracking and sorting children from a young age?" asks Astra Taylor in this single from n+1 (Issue 13). In her answer, Taylor blends memoir and educational history in a broad-reaching examination of unusual alternatives to mainstream education in the United States.

Editorial Reviews Review

Say what you will about government-issue education, there are alternatives. And not just for the wealthy, insists Astra Taylor, who split her formative years between "unschooling" at home and traditional public schools. At home, curiosity ruled. She and her siblings enjoyed free reign of the mind, encouraged by their parents to pursue whatever they chose, whenever they chose. No 50-minute sessions, no mandated math, no social minefields... In public school, she endured what she describes as "the management of boredom, the administration of mental fatigue." These contrasting experiences might lead a lesser writer to lambaste the nation's schools as little more than factories for the manufacturing of passive patriots, but Taylor is, frankly, better educated than that, and Unschooling represents a much more meaningful undertaking. She ultimately seeks a compassionate compromise, based on a respect for our shared destiny and fueled by--here it is again--ceaseless curiosity. Ideas abound in this breezily heady read for parents, educators, administrators, and anyone (of any class) who recognizes the fundamental importance of education in a literate world. --Jason Kirk

From AudioFile

Product Details

  • File Size: 120 KB
  • Print Length: 23 pages
  • Publisher: n+1 Foundation, Inc. (January 12, 2012)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B006WWGVX0
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #326,359 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I am a school principal in a small rural school and I am sick to death of the curriculum wars. Public education is a political football in my country, Australia. Astra offers an insight into what is possible if children are allowed to just learn. One of the great failings of schooling is that children are expected to be good at everything, whereas as adults they can be specialists. In my multi-level classroom we don't worry about grade levels too much just what's interesting. I thought I was a bit radical but Astra suggests I have not yet gone far enough.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars interesting February 6, 2013
By ash
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
had to read for school. was very interesting read about unconventional methods of schooling. I didn't mind that I was obligated to read it.
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5.0 out of 5 stars In depth May 15, 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Most unschooling writing is defensive. This is thoughtful and refreshingly aware of social justice issues. Astra Taylor is an amazing thinker.
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16 of 25 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Short Overview of Unschooling January 18, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
If your child decides one day to quit school, like my daughter, this would be a great single to give the doubting masses. Gatto's Weapons of Mass Instruction is too long a tract to explain the decision. This is a 2 dollar hand grenade you can toss in the direction of the cookie cutter masses.
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More About the Author

n+1 is a Brooklyn-based magazine of literature, culture, and politics published three times yearly. It was founded in 2004 by Keith Gessen (All the Sad Literary Young Men), Mark Greif, Chad Harbach (The Art of Fielding), Benjamin Kunkel (Indecision), and Marco Roth and immediately attracted attention in New York and beyond. A. O. Scott described it in the New York Times Magazine as part of "a generational struggle against laziness and cynicism"; German newspaper Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung wrote, "they intend nothing less than to reimagine and reestablish the world."

Since its founding, n+1 has published Elif Batuman's remarkable first essays (later collected in The Possessed), Mark Greif's classic essays "Against Exercise," "On Radiohead," and "Afternoon of the Sex Children," excerpts from Helen DeWitt's latest novels (most recently Lightning Rods), and other memorable pieces. Each issue is about the length of a novel (200 pages), and features criticism, memoirs, fiction, reviews, and political essays. We also publish small books (most notably What Was the Hipster?) and at Amazon have made Kindle editions of all our publications and Kindle Singles of individual pieces available.

Our fall issue, "Conversion Experience," features a report from the Gathering of the Juggalos, an essay by Mark Greif on Stanley Cavell as a philosopher and teacher, an excerpt from Helen DeWitt's new novel, a history of the music website Pitchfork, and an essay on the politics and angst of gay marriage. We encourage you to take a look at let us know what you think. You can read more about us, browse web-only content, and find contact information at


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