- 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 0.5 x 8.5 inches
- Shipping Weight: 10.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars See all reviews (43 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #145,290 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Teaching As a Subversive Activity First Delta Printing Edition
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Top Customer Reviews
Given that the past few decades have produced much of what Postman wishes, it is worth asking whether people today are significantly better educated than those a generation or two ago? The fact that in the UK, the 50+ generation is significantly more literate than the 20+ generation would suggest otherwise.
The progressive experiment has failed to produced better educated citizens, and the roots of Postman's argument reveal why. Students should only learn what they are interested in, he repeatedly asserts. If you try to teach them boring irrelevant subjects such as the economy of ancient Egypt you deserve all the opprobrium they heap upon you. Oh yes? I am a history teacher and I can tell you that a history syllabus constructed entirely of what students are interested in would consist of a series of conspiracy theories involving the role of the illuminati through the ages and a year long speculation as to whether Hitler really committed suicide in his bunker as the 'official' history states or whether he lived on until his 90s in disguise in Argentina. Trips would consist only of 'interesting' sites such as a tour of the Ripper murders in Whitechapel and no 'boring' tours of Cathedrals or museums to learn about religious or cultural history. As for complex analysis of the interrelationship of social political and economic trends through the ages, forget it.
The fact is, what students are interested in and find 'relevant' as teenagers, turns out in many cases to be less so when they become adults. Furthermore, those students who persist in engaging with difficult and perhaps even boring pursuits when they are young, like trying to master complex historical themes, or music scales, or Latin, or grammar, or the rudiments of a foreign language, or covalent bonding, or differential calculus, might find that, with persistence, and guided by wise and committed teachers, their range of interests and abilities develops more significantly than those of their peers who decide to spend all their adolescence playing video games.
As Aristotle said, the roots of learning are bitter, but the fruits are sweet. Young people who grow up encouraged to only respect what they find immediately interesting turn into selfish, narrow minded, uneducated adults who are intolerable to other people and (though they may not realise it), intolerable to themselves.
The fruits of Postman's educational methods can be seen all around us.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Lots of references to educational research from 1930-1970.Read more