Great piece! The Ivan Illich quote and source you found is excellent too!

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May 18, 2022Liked by Henrik Karlsson

Thanks for guiding me through the Swedish experience! I now realize I lost a big chunk of opportunity growing up as a young social outcast. A great read! Even greater concepts of learning!

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This whole experiement/movement in Sweden reminds me of Peter Gray describing what are the people like in a society that values free learning. It's surprising to learn from your article that this effectively happened at scale in Sweden just as he described:

"They [unschoolers] develop some direct understanding, an appreciation of the democratic process because they've been involved in... a school where students are involved in creating the rules and enforcing the rules. They've developed a sense of what a democracy really is and how a democracy works and so they tend to be good democratic citizens as adults. They tend to vote. They tend to take part. The tend to get involved in social causes and so on. Many of them attribute that to the fact that they in this smaller community of the school their voice was respected and heard and they want their voice to continue to be respected and heard and so they work towards systems that will allow it to be respected and heard in the larger community"


Peter Gray is a developmental psychologist and authored "Free to Learn: Why Unleashing the Instinct to Play Will Make Our Children Happier, More Self-Reliant, and Better Students for Life"

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> Another factor behind the success of study circles was their focus on communal self-improvement. Study circles were a child of the temperance movement – a movement that neither sought collective power, like the unions, nor self-improvement for the individual, but rather encouraged people to improve to serve their fellow human beings. This focus on communal self-improvement seems to have provided momentum to the movement. It also helped foster social capital formation, creating dense high-trust networks.

This communal self-improvement sounds great

I wonder in today’a hyper capitalistic society how does one kickstart a movement like this?

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