Thursday, May 14, 2009

Quote of the week

"There is no question that at present the current university offers a unique combination of circumstances which allows some of its members to criticise the whole of society. It provides time, mobility, access to peers and information and a certain impunity — privileges not equality available to other segments of the population. But the university provides this freedom only to those who have already been deeply initiated into the consumer society and into the need for some kind of obligatory public schooling.

The modern university offers the privilege of dissent on those who have been tested and classified as potential money-makers or powerholders. Schools select at each successive level those who have, at earlier stages in the game, proved themselves good risks for the established order. Having a monopoly on both the resources for learning and the investiture of social roles, a university co-opts the discoverer and the potential dissenter."

— from Ivan Illich's landmark text 'Deschooling Society' (Penguin Books, Education Specials, 1971).

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