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deschooling

deschooling A movement associated with the writings of Ivan Illich (Deschooling Society, 1971) and Paulo Freire (Pedagogy of the Oppressed, 1970), although critiques of the role of the educational system in the development process had been presented earlier, by René Dumont (False Start in Africa, 1962) among others. The movement was influential during the 1970s, especially in the United States, although Illich and Freire both wrote from a Latin American perspective. The central ideas are that education and learning permeate all life-experiences and social relationships, and are not the monopoly of the formal educational system; that in the Third World it is essential for the curriculum to build on pupils' own experiences and provide relevant knowledge and skills; and that conventional educational systems serve in practice to demean and exclude many social groups (for example the poor) and to create institutional dependence. Wider political arguments are developed from this position. See also EDUCATION, SOCIOLOGY OF.

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