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A Primer of Libertarian Education

reviewed by Diane Ravitch - 1977

coverTitle: A Primer of Libertarian Education
Author(s): Joel Spring
Publisher: John Wiley, New York
ISBN: 1551641178, Pages: 157, Year: 1975
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There is a story, perhaps apochryphal, that someone has scrawled the following graffitti in the washroom at Ivan Illich's CIDOC center in Cuernavaca, Mexico: "Ivan Illich runs a school." Well, now it can be said that Joel Spring, a follower of Illich and a leading advocate of anar­chism in education, has a plan for the re­construction of society. And his plan, put forward in the name of libertarianism, involves a degree of government inter­vention into personal life that is far more extensive than anything yet seen in this country. Spring takes Illich's proposal for deschooling society several steps further. As an anarchist, he opposes all institu­tionalized efforts to make children into something, to shape character, to define for someone else what is good. He main­tains that it is not just the school that shapes "the moral and social beliefs of the population for the benefit of a dom­inant elite"; an even more potent source of domination and indoctrination is the middle-class family structure.1 So, while much of... (preview truncated at 150 words.)

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Cite This Article as: Teachers College Record Volume 78 Number 3, 1977, p. 391-396
https://www.tcrecord.org ID Number: 1252, Date Accessed: 4/22/2021 7:14:29 AM

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About the Author
  • Diane Ravitch
    Teachers College, Columbia University
    Diane Ravitch is adjunct assistant professor of history and education and research associate in the Institute of Philosophy and Politics of Education at Teachers College.
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