Don't Fence Me In

Don't Fence Me In : Essays on the Rational Truant

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This book assumes that most truancy is the logical outcome of rational decisions made by students in the face of the circumstances that characterize their school experience. It declines to attribute and consign all acts of truancy to the dustbin of deviance and anti-social behavior. While it does not seek to absolve young people from responsibility for their actions, it seeks to show that structural weaknesses in the state-supported school system play a significant role in the causation of truancy both from class and school. The book consists of a series of essays written from a perspective that seeks to explain and understand truancy rationally. Some contributors report on recent research including the relation of teaching style to truancy, the incidence of truancy as a function of ethnic group and linguistic proficiency, the student as consumer, and the importance of establishing a literate order to decrease truancy rates. Other essays are more speculative and theoretical, including an assessment of political attitudes to truancy, a personal account by a recalcitrant former truant, a study of conflicting explanations of the phenomenon, an examination of the measurement of truancy and an account of 'truant' and its numerous synonyms. Contributors include Ron Bartholomew, Jonathan Shute, Jack Christianson, Bruce S. Cooper, M.P. Conolly, Sean Gabb, Colin Coldman, and Dennis O'Keeffe who is best known for his The Politics of Truancy.REVIEWS One of the most intriguing ideas advanced in this book is that, at least in some circumstances, truancy represents a rational choice, a better and more productive use of time than the pointless tedium of the classroom. If that is true rigid enforcement of attendance is not only oppressive but also irrational. John Clarke"show more

Product details

  • Paperback | 200 pages
  • 156 x 230 x 14mm | 381.02g
  • The University of Buckingham Press
  • Buckingham, United Kingdom
  • English
  • New.
  • 0955464269
  • 9780955464263

Review quote

The essays collected in this volume question the received wisdom that truants from schooling are acting irrationally and should be coerced into attending school from a variety of perspectives. Topics include the political economy of truancy, cause and reason in the study of truancy, fighting truancy with consumer choice in education, teaching style and truancy, political attitudes towards truancy, and truancy as a function of ethnic group and linguistic proficiency. Previously unavailable in the USshow more