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Book Title: The Ignorant Schoolmaster: Five Lessons in Intellectual Emancipation|
Edition: Stanford University Press
Date of issue: July 1st 1991
ISBN 13: 9780804719698
The author of the book: Jacques Rancière
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 8.47 MB
Read full description of the books The Ignorant Schoolmaster: Five Lessons in Intellectual Emancipation:This extraordinary book can be read on several levels. Primarily, it is the story of Joseph Jacotot, an exiles French schoolteacher who discovered in 1818 an unconventional teaching method that spread panic throughout the learned community of Europe.
Knowing no Flemish, Jacotot found himself able to teach in French to Flemish students who knew no French; knowledge, Jacotot concluded, was not necessary to teach, nor explication necessary to learn. The results of this unusual experiment in pedagogy led him to announce that all people were equally intelligent. From this postulate, Jacotot devised a philosophy and a method for what he called "intellectual emancipation"—a method that would allow, for instance, illiterate parents to themselves teach their children how to read. The greater part of the book is devoted to a description and analysis of Jacotot's method, its premises, and (perhaps most important) its implications for understanding both the learning process and the emancipation that results when that most subtle of hierarchies, intelligence, is overturned.
The book, as Kristin Ross argues in her introduction, has profound implications for the ongoing debate about education and class in France that has raged since the student riots of 1968, and it affords Rancière an opportunity (albeit indirectly) to attack the influential educational and sociological theories of Pierre Bourdieu (and others) that Rancière sees as perpetuating inequality.
Read information about the authorJacques Rancière (born Algiers, 1940) is a French philosopher and Emeritus Professor of Philosophy at the University of Paris (St. Denis) who came to prominence when he co-authored Reading Capital (1968), with the Marxist philosopher Louis Althusser.
Rancière contributed to the influential volume Reading "Capital" (though his contribution is not contained in the partial English translation) before publicly breaking with Althusser over his attitude toward the May 1968 student uprising in Paris.
Since then, Rancière has departed from the path set by his teacher and published a series of works probing the concepts that make up our understanding of political discourse. What is ideology? What is the proletariat? Is there a working class? And how do these masses of workers that thinkers like Althusser referred to continuously enter into a relationship with knowledge? We talk about them but what do we know? An example of this line of thinking is Rancière's book entitled Le philosophe et ses pauvres (The Philosopher and His Poor, 1983), a book about the role of the poor in the intellectual lives of philosophers.
Most recently Rancière has written on the topic of human rights and specifically the role of international human rights organizations in asserting the authority to determine which groups of people — again the problem of masses — justify human rights interventions, and even war.
In 2006, it was reported that Rancière's aesthetic theory had become a point of reference in the visual arts, and Rancière has lectured at such art world events as the Freize Art Fair. Former French presidential candidate Ségolène Royal has cited Rancière as her favourite philosopher.
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