- Paperback: 219 pages
- Publisher: Delta Publishing; First Delta Printing edition (July 15, 1971)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0385290098
- ISBN-13: 978-0385290098
- Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.6 x 8.5 inches
- Shipping Weight: 10.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 42 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #37,925 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Teaching As a Subversive Activity First Delta Printing Edition
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“A healthy dose of Postman and Weingartner is a good thing: if they make even a dent in the pious . . . American classroom, the book will be worthwhile.”—New York Times Book Review
“Teaching and knowledge are subversive in that they necessarily substitute awareness for guesswork, and knowledge for experience. Experience is no use in the world of Apollo 8. It is simply necessary to know. However, it is also necessary to know the effect of Apollo 8 in creating a new Global Theatre in which student and teacher alike are looking for roles. Postman and Weingartner make excellent theatrical producers in the new Global Theatre.”—Marshall McLuhan
“It will take courage to read this book . . . but those who are asking honest questions—what’s wrong with the worlds in which we live, how do we build communication bridges cross the Generation Gap, what do they want from us?—these people will squirm in the discovery that the answers are really within themselves.”—Saturday Review
“Neil Postman and Charles Weingartner go beyond the now-familiar indictments of American education to propose basic ways of liberating both teachers and students from becoming personnel rather than people . . . the authors have created what may become a primer of ‘the new education’ Their book is intended for anyone, teacher or not, who is concerned with sanity and survival in a world of precipitously rapid change, and it’s worth your reading.”—Playboy
“This challenging, liberating book can unlock not only teachers but anyone for whom language and learning are not dead.”—Nat Hentoff
About the Author
Neil Postman was a University Professor, the Paulette Goddard Chair of Media Ecology, and the chair of the Department of Media, Culture, and Communication, all at New York University. Among his 20 books are studies of childhood (The Disappearance of Childhood); public discourse (Amusing Ourselves to Death); education (Teaching as a Subversive Activity and The End of Education); and the impact of technology (Technopoly). His interest in education was long-standing, beginning with his experience as an elementary and secondary school teacher. He died in 2003.
Top customer reviews
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Very good book that teachers ought to read. Very stimulating, and though I disagree with some of its emphases and don’t agree with everything it says, particularly on merely “survival” and on being critical of everything because you must be right and authority must be distrusted, I do see that it is a good balance, for many follow blindly a failing curriculum/education paradigm. But for those already hyper-critical of any kind of tradition, one should, naturally be critical of being critical.
However, the questions-based approach(es) in the book were well worth the price of admission. The last few chapters were good, though I was not as impressed with the last chapter, where Postman & Weingartner talk about survival as an end in itself, almost in a “Walking Dead” kind of way. We got to do whatever we can to survive, and while that is understandable, life is not just about “mere survival” but we must also address larger questions of purpose, value, morality, right and wrong (though of course, things are not always black and white, as Postman & Weingartner remind us – we don’t live in a binary world).
I appreciate Postman & Weingartner’s practical approach, but we must not forget that pragmatics cannot be the only thing that governs how we live, learn, or teach. But to end on a positive note, Postman & Weingartner are right to insist that if students aren’t learning, then the teacher isn’t teaching. There is no such thing as “teaching” in a way that others cannot learn. The student should be the center/focus, not a syllabus or curriculum. And grading is just terrible.
Teachers ought to read this and try the practical suggestions that Postman & Weingartner suggest at the end of the book.
It takes the reader/"student" through rediscovering involvement and survival in the "modern" world by asking questions and more questions and seeking answers/information together rather than passively accepting the "lessons" others prepare and then trying to regurgitate the acceptable "answers" on demand. This book proposes a different way to learn - a more natural, interactive and "student" centered approach that promises big results if the instutions are willing to let go of their centralized control and metrics.
Following this path will take real courage because it does not fit with any of the popular "solutions" to our longstanding educational crisis, be it in public, private or parochial school systems.
Most recent customer reviews
Lots of references to educational research from 1930-1970.Read more