Wednesday, August 05, 2009

Community vs Networks -2

I'm responding to a comment made in response to the post,'Communities Vs Networks.' I agree with the reader that schools are organizations but even more so,they are institutions.
And we know that what institutions have as goal is self-perpetuation.
In the final analysis, an institution has its own best interest at heart no matter the original well-intentioned vision.
I think that the way we use the word community can be misleading. 'The cycling community,''the faith community,''the health community.' If you follow the definition of community as Taylor Gatto explains it in his address "We Need Less School, Not More," these are actually networks,not communities.
"It is a fact generally ignored when considering the communal nature of institutional families like schools,large corporations,colleges,armies,hospitals and government agencies that they are not real communities at all, but networks. Unlike communities, networks - as I reminded you - have a very narrow way of allowing people to associate, and that way is always across a short spectrum of one, or at most a few, specific uniformities.

"In spite of ritual moments like the Christmas Party or the office softball game, when individual human components in the network "go home," they go home alone. And in spite of humanitarian support from fellow workers that eases emergencies. when people in networks suffer they suffer alone unless they have a family or community to suffer with them.

Even with college dorm "communities," those most engaging and intimate simulations of community imaginable, who among us has not experienced an awful realization after graduation that we cannot remember our friends' names or faces very well? Or who, if he can remember, feels much desire to renew those associations?"

I think that last part cinched it for me!
To read the entire essay click here.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Networks have their own specific agendas-nothing wrong with that. That works but they should be honest about it and not pretend to fill in the role of a community.

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