Wednesday, June 30, 2010

JDM on Modern Education

“What happened to the schools?

“The pedagogues decided learning should be fun. For a long time they gave up phonetics and phonetic drill. Learn words by their shape. And they gave up keeping students back until they could pass the class work. There were lots of field trips. Still are. Lots of athletics and games. Kids can slide through without any special effort. Call it the Len Bias syndrome. At the time of his death he had been taking five classes at the University of Maryland, was failing them all, had given up two of them, and had stopped attending the remaining three. He would have been hard pressed to write a third grade theme, a simple three- or four-sentence description of a bunny rabbit. A fabulous athlete with a skull full of wet noodles. Quite obviously his attitude was that he did not need all that book shit…

“The life unexamined is the life unlived. Can one examine his own life without reference to the realities in which he lives? The political, geographical, historical, philosophical, scientific, religious realities? He does not have to know all aspects with some kind of deadly precision. He has to know the truth of them, the shape and the size, their place in relation to each other. He has to know them in the context to which reasonable and rational and thoughtful men of his times have assigned them.”

--- Speaking as "Meyer" in Reading for Survival (1986)

1 comment:

  1. ...and hard pressed to quote "Mary Had A Litle Lamb".