It's a fictional streetscape we wander, here, a metropolis whose buildings, boulevards, and back alleys are in a constant state of flux. This is every place, and yet, no place at all - a city of dreams and a dream of a city.

Here, we explore the life and work of Ivan Illich and his circle of collaborators. There's no comprehensive index to the articles published, but we invite you to use the Search box, to the left, and to explore the Archive links that appear at the bottom of each page. Comments are welcomed.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Illich's Wikipedia Page

Is it a measure of anything particular that Wikipedia's page about Ivan Illich is so barren of information and analysis, especially as compared to the pages devoted to many other philosophers and social critics?

The main body of the Illich page offers a few paragraphs about his "personal life," a paragraph or two about each of three books, and a paragraph each about three "concepts": counterproductivity, radical monopoly, and conviviality. The total word count for this material: 1,500 words. At the bottom, there is a list of Illich's many books, but none gets any more info than its title, year, and ISBN code. (And one of these books doesn't actually exist: no book called 'Blasphemy: A Radical Critique of Our Technological Culture' was ever published - nor was it ever written, as far as we've been able to determine. Evidently, its title continues to linger in the Books in Print directory.)

Perhaps Illich doesn't have that many followers who care to write about him. More likely, we believe, is that Illich's thinking is too radical and intricate to be easily summarized and so far, nobody has come forward who's ready to tackle it in full.

Perhaps we'll take a shot at expanding Wikipedia's page. Stay tuned.

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Santa Rosa, California, United States
Writer, photographer, music fan; father and husband living in northern Calif.