Quickies

Quickies: Solidarity with Columbia rape survivor, vaccination in LA, and a father’s opinion

Amanda

Amanda is a science grad student in Boston whose favorite pastimes are having friendly debates and running amok.

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3 Comments

  1. Three of the four schools listed in the graphic in the io9 story have ‘Waldorf’ IN THEIR NAMES. The ‘journalist’ seems to be to lazy or incurious to even attempt to find out what that means.

    Steiner/Waldorf schools are operated by a post-theosophical cult. Their curricula tend to include bizarre paranormal and racist beliefs written into their background documents by Rudolph Steiner himself.

    Anti-immunization is prescribed by Steiner and the schools still teach it today.

    1. TBH, I’ve always said antivaxxers suffer from modern privilege. The reason people think measles or polio isn’t that bad is because no one they know has had it. Which leads to the idea that vaccines are unnecessary. And a return of…all those nasty infections.

      Hey, have you ever read Barbara Hambly’s vampire books? In the third one, there’s an analysis of why so many Russian nobles were so into Blavatsky, Steiner, and the like in the Russian monarchy’s decadent period.

    2. As an atheist who went to three Waldorf schools, I have to say, you sound like a fool.

      Anthroposophy (the name of the “cult” in question), IS present around Waldorf schools, but the curriculum included little to nothing like what you’re describing, and the religious philosophy is largely separate from the educational philosophy.

      The basic educational philosophy is that different subjects should be blended together (writing skills taught as part of history, drawing representations of math problems, singing as part of language, drawing as part of science, and lots of overlap all around); that students should have a chance to try out all possible areas of study in grade school, and then be allowed a degree of specialization in high school, to give them an idea of what they want to do AFTER high school.

      Like many schools in America, the history was more focused on Europe, but there was also a conscious effort to teach about non-European cultures. It wasn’t as complete as it could have been, but it was better than what some of my friends got in public schools.

      There were no “bizarre paranormal or racist beliefs” that I can recall – the closest we got was a morning poem invoking a nameless “creator spirit”. I suppose it’s fair to call ANY supernatural belief bizarre, but I don’t get the impression that’s what you were doing.

      I’m also pretty sure the vast majority of students who went through the schools had no idea that anthroposophy was even a thing, let alone WHAT it is – I only knew because my mother was a teacher there, and so she had to learn about it (was not a believer, or whatever you would call it).

      There was also nothing about vaccination – I was vaccinated, as was a majority of my classmates. There WERE a few anti-vaxxers around, and there were a lot of people who were into homeopathy, but that’s the case in a lot of liberal communities where some vague form of spiritualism is popular.

      The schools I attended did not and do not teach anti-immunization. Ever.

      They did not attempt to teach about Anthroposophy. Ever.

      They did not attempt to advocate any particular faith. Ever.

      They did not incorporate racist messages. I would say “ever” but I don’t remember every bit of curriculum there, and I wasn’t really aware of the more subtle types of race-related messaging, so I can’t be sure.

      So I’ll come to an end, and my big question – got a citation for your claims?

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