Literacy for Stupidification

Spending time in Burma, I have seen this type of education in effect in the most basic manner possible. Children are generally made to sit on stools, still as boards. They spend hours reciting things, sometimes in English, with no knowledge of what they are saying. This is not authentic education, we see this happening in our schools as well, although perhaps not so blatantly. It also makes me think of Doug Rushkoff’s book, Program or be Programmed (not that I have read it). The following excerpt states this phenomenon very eloquently:

Both the instrumental literacy for the poor, in the form of a competency-based skills banking approach, and the highest form of instrumental literacy for the rich, acquired through the university in the form of professional specialization, share one common feature: they both prevent the development of the critical thinking that enables one to “read the world” critically and to understand the reasons and linkages behind the facts.

Literacy for the poor is, by and large, characterized by mindless, meaningless drills and exercises given “in preparation for multiple choice exams and writing gobbledygook in imitation of the psycho-babble that surrounds them? This instrumental approach to literacy sets the stage for the anesthetization of the mind.

Literacy for Stupidification: The Pedagogy of Big Lies by Donaldo P. Macedo

“What good fortune for those in power that people do not think.” Aldolf Hitler

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