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, June 06, 2012

A Call for Papers - Education and Poverty, San Francisco, May, 2013

The Ivan Illich Special Interest Group (SIG) of the American Education Research Association (AREA), has put out the following call for papers. (For those not familiar with it, the 1988 paper by Illich cited here is a powerful one, and one of the few written after Deschooling Society that explicitly discusses education.):

Ivan Illich SIG Call For Papers

AERA Conference, San Francisco 2013

When AERA convenes in San Francisco in May 2013, we warmly invite you to our table to add your voice in our discussions of Ivan Illich. May you find hospitality as you share our wine and embrace the ideas of Ivan Illich with us. We invite (and accept!) a wide variety of submissions, so please feel encouraged to submit!

Related to the conference theme – Education and Poverty: Theory, Research, Policy and Practice – we encourage papers that utilize Ivan’s critical stance toward education and current views of poverty. Ivan saw clearly that education was not a path out of poverty; the educational enterprise is not the secular Church offering salvation. The atheists of this secular Church, the refuseniks we call drop-outs, offer their own indifference to the power of schooling. Yet, we still believe that all citizens need schooling; poverty is a sign that their secular Church has failed them.

Guided by Ivan’s The Educational Enterprise in the Light of the Gospel (1988) and other writings, we encourage papers that question the salvation of schooling, particularly salvation aimed at the poor.

How are we defining poverty? The AERA call for papers describes our fight against “economic, intellectual, and moral poverty.” How might our understandings of Ivan’s writing and teaching help to make these qualifiers of poverty more problematic? How might we come to learn from other Schindlers of our time, those who “expect nothing from an evil system in which they have made their career but the chance to make its total victims feel that they can beat it”? (Illich, 1988) What are we to learn from the refuseniks, the atheists of our secular Church, who live below middle class means by choice?

Do the poor need salvation? Does lower-class status preclude a meaningful life? What role do money and power have in finding conviviality? Also, how might we address ways that AERA increasingly features a poverty of hospitality, especially for junior or emerging scholars who lack the name capital to ring in guaranteed sessions? The Illich SIG hopes resolutely to distinguish itself and make a space at the table for those that would join it.

We encourage your interpretation of these and any other questions that Ivan Illich found interesting. Whatever path brings you to Ivan’s writings, we hope you will share your paper with us. Please submit!

Please be encouraged to ask any questions you have. Copied below are instructions from AERA on the submission process.


Your (possibly incoming) SIG Chair and Program Chair,

Kristin and Dana

Kristin D. Jones - Concordia University, Chicago

Dana Stuchul - Penn State

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