My Philosophy of Education professor died last week. He was one of the rare people who had me sitting at lectures, staring, swallowing every word, writing down everything I can, trying so hard to understand. I was never very good at philosophy, and I don’t think I ever fully understood the things he used to say. But I understood enough to know that he was a great man, a rare man.
Coincidentally, he was the only person who saw that I am unable to come up with an original thought, and came a point away from failing me. Quite possibly the only true grade I ever got in university.
The day before he died, he came to the university for his final, farewell lecture. I didn’t know about the lecture (or the fact he was dying) until afterward, but one of the other professors was kind enough to record it and put the highlights of it on his blog. Below is my translation of parts of it.
I ask myself even today
How to educate our young and so, also ourselves?
We must insist on a struggle for a worthy life against the imperatives of reality.
I will make a comment: the reality is not just post-modern.
It’s pre-modern and at the same time also modern.
Rahat, Ofakim, Hadera and many parts of Haifa are not post-modern.
And against huge currents that accompany reality there are fierce opposite reactions
and the fact that there isn’t just one reality but different socio-economical realities
that swallow one another,
that influence one another,
is an opening for hope of an education in-between,
of education that will teach our children how to cross social boundaries,
how to not be mere victims
and not co-operate with the regular fruit of the education system that creates the normalising education of victims who replicate the system.
These are our children who find trivial things on the internet
and get solutions that are in themselves a part of the problem
just like resistance,
like the new-age culture that is supposedly a reaction while in fact being part of the
capitalist culture and accompanying it.
I say we must educate our young ones and ourselves
to cross borders,
to live in the cracks,
in the passage.
These will not be possible if there is no room for Eros.