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I Won't Learn from You: And Other Thoughts…

"I Won't Learn from You": And Other Thoughts on Creative Maladjustment

by Herbert R. Kohl

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This is a slim gem from one of my education policy and philosophy heroes.

"To agree to learn from a stranger who does not respect your integrity causes a major loss of self. The only alternative is to not-learn and reject the stranger's world."

"Not-learning (as a conscious choice, as opposed to a failure to learn) and unlearning are central techniques that support changes of consciousness and help people develop positive ways of thinking and speaking in opposition to dominant forms of oppression. Not-learning in particular requires a strong will and an ability to take the kinds of pressure exerted by people whose power you choose to question."

"Throughout life, there may be as much occasion for not-learning as there is occasion for learning. It is uncomfortable to talk about the need to reject certain kinds of learning and reassuring to look at learning in a positive way, but without studying not-learning we can get only a partial view of the complex decisions facing people as they choose values and decide upon actions. I am just beginning to understand the importance of not-learning in the lives of children, and I urge other people to think and write about roads people choose to not-travel and how those choices define character and influence destiny." ( )
  beckydj | Mar 31, 2013 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 156584095X, Hardcover)

"I Won't Learn from You," Herb Kohl's classic essay on "not learning," or refusing to learn, is now available in book form, together with four new essays. Drawing on an idea of Martin Luther King Jr.'s, Kohl talks about the need for "creative maladjustment" in the classroom and indeed anywhere else that students' intelligence, dignity, or integrity are compromised by a teacher, an institution, or a larger social mindset. This volume also includes 'The Tattooed Man," Kohl's autobiographical essay about "hopemongering," which Kohl finds essential for all effective teaching in these difficult times.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:22:50 -0400)

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