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Weapons of Mass Instruction: A Schoolteacher's Journey Through the Dark World of Compulsory Schooling

Gatto, John Taylor

2010, April 1

weapons mass instruction

John Taylor Gatto’s Weapons of Mass Instruction , now available in paperback, focuses on mechanisms of traditional education which cripple imagination, discourage critical thinking, and create a false view of learning as a byproduct of rote-memorization drills. Gatto’s earlier book, Dumbing Us Down, introduced the now-famous expression of the title into the common vernacular. Weapons of Mass Instruction adds another chilling metaphor to the brief against conventional schooling.

Gatto demonstrates that the harm school inflicts is rational and deliberate. The real function of pedagogy, he argues, is to render the common population manageable. To that end, young people must be conditioned to rely upon experts, to remain divided from natural alliances and to accept disconnections from their own lived experiences. They must at all costs be discouraged from developing self-reliance and independence.

Escaping this trap requires a strategy Gatto calls “open source learning” which imposes no artificial divisions between learning and life. Through this alternative approach our children can avoid being indoctrinated-only then can they achieve self-knowledge, good judgment, and courage.

Where to Find Resource Online

The book can be purchased online:

     Barnes & Noble


Free digital versions are available to read and download:

     Internet Archive

PDF version available below.


John Taylor Gatto discusses education June 27, 2004:

Source link to this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XaO7Ms55Dn0

PDF Document

Free PDF version:

     Weapons of Mass Instruction

Filed under the following tags: education psychology

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