In Search of Ivan Illich

Searching for Ivan Illich means looking for answers to a series of interconnected questions. First, just who was Illich? What shape did his outer life take? And within that context, how did his thought unfold, and how was it driven by the structure of his personality? Yet all this leads up to our principal question, which is what did he say about the reform of the institutional church, and are his ideas in this area worth pursuing today?

Illich lived within a shimmering cloud of stories spun by himself and others that obscured as much as they revealed about what he was really like. This was true in the 1960s and 1970s when his fame was at its height, and remained true in the 1980s and 1990s when he disappeared below the radar of most of those who had heard about him before. An outline of his outer life would, therefore, be useful, a task made much easier than it would have been because in the last years of his life his friend David Cayley persuaded him to record two series of interviews that he broadcast and then edited into Ivan Illich in Conversation and The Rivers North of the Future, both with fine introductions by Cayley to Illich’s life and thought. For Illich’s younger years we have the profile, “The Rules of the Game” by Francine du Plessix Gray, reprinted in her book Divine Disobedience. (1)

Ivan (E-ván) Illich was born in Vienna on Sept. 4, 1926. His father Piero has been variously described as a Roman Catholic, Croatian, nobleman, landowner, civil engineer and diplomat from Dalmatia where his family owned property in Split, and vineyards, olive groves and an ancestral home stretching back to the time of the Crusades on the Island of Brac. Soon after Ivan was born in Vienna -where his mother’s family lived, and where she had gone to have expert help on hand because of a difficult labor – he was brought back to Brac to be presented to his grandfather and baptized.

His mother Ellen Regenstreif-Ortlieb was from a family of converted Sephardic Jews who had settled in Germany around Heidelberg. (2) Her father, Fritz, owned sawmills and was in the lumber trade in Bosnia, and lived in an art nouveau villa on the outskirts of Vienna. His wife was from Texas. (3) When Ivan was 6 his mother left Dalmatia with him and his younger twin brothers and they never saw their father again. She attempted to enroll Ivan, who already spoke French, German and Italian, in a good school in Vienna, but the school tested him and concluded that he was retarded. This allowed him, to his delight, to spend his time until he was 8 in his grandfather’s library. (4)

With the ascendancy of the Nazis their position in Vienna became more and more untenable. Ivan carried bribes to the Nazi authorities and was, because of the size of his nose, paraded before his class in the Piaristengymnasium as a physical representative of the Jewish race. The family fled to Florence in 1941, the same year that his maternal grandfather died, and his father was to die in 1942.

These early years naturally shaped the man to come. Illich later noted how life in Dalmatia still had had its traditional rhythms rooted in the Middle Ages. This rootedness made a deep impression on him: the ancient wood rafters of his grandfather’s house, the stone slabs on its roof, the harvest of the grapes. (5) He also notes, however, that his birth coincided with the arrival on the Island of Brac of the first loudspeaker, a herald of the changes to come. (6)

His oft-noted linguistic abilities had their roots in his childhood, as he moved back and forth from Dalmatia to Vienna and traveled in Europe with his parents. But the increasingly oppressive atmosphere created by the Nazis could have only turned a life of privilege and economic security into one that was increasingly precarious. By the time he was 12, Illich tells us, while walking in a vineyard on the outskirts of Vienna on the eve of the Nazi takeover of Austria, he had decided he would never marry because, “certain things will happen which will make it impossible for me to give children to those towers down on the island in Dalmatia where my grandfathers and great-grandfathers made children.”(7) So while we can begin to understand some of the cloud of rumors that surrounded him, “he claims to know 14 languages and not to have a mother tongue,” (8) this facility was more than simply a matter of linguistic opportunity and talent. It was also an uprooting that was to color his whole life: “Since I left the old house on the island in Dalmatia, I have never had a place which I called my home.”(9)

In Florence, Illich completed his secondary education at the Liceo Scientifico Leonardo da Vinci, and went on to the University of Florence where he studied histology and worked on discerning blood groups by crystallography. (10) He was interested in the work of Rudolf Steiner and Ludwig Klages, as well as primitive art. (11) By 1943 he had decided to become a priest, a momentous decision about which Illich appears to have remained silent, except to say that it was preceded by a 30 day retreat according to the guidelines set forth by St. Ignatius Loyola, the founder of the Jesuits.

He went to Rome to study philosophy at the Jesuits’ Gregorian University. In 1946 he began to study for a license in theology, and worked on the question of religious motivation in the thought of Romano Guardini. (12) At the same time he took a doctorate in history from the University of Salzburg, occasioned by the fact that a lawyer told him that being a student would help him obtain a resident permit, but he became fascinated with history and completed his doctorate on Arnold Toynbee and the difficulties of historical knowledge. He was ordained in 1951 and said his first Mass in the catacombs. (13)

Illich tells us that he had met Jacques Maritain, the noted Thomist philosopher at a seminar in Rome, and Maritain became “a dear friend and advisor.” (14) Maritain had become the French ambassador to the Vatican in 1945, and he had established a center at the parish church of the French community, San Luigi dei Francesi where seminarians could meet and hold conferences, and he was to remain ambassador until May, 1948. Maritain, during those years, was writing one of the most profound of his metaphysical books, Existence and the Existent. Through Maritain, Illich may have also become acquainted with Giovanni Battista Montini, then the under Secretary of State for the Vatican, a friend and admirer of Maritain, and the future Pope Paul VI. Illich, with his family background, quick intelligence and linguistic skills, was a good candidate for the Vatican Diplomatic Corps, and Montini is said to have urged him to stay in Rome, but he was ready to spread his wings and had thoughts of studying the alchemy in the thought of Albertus Magnus at Princeton where Maritain now taught.

In New York City, however, on the very night of his arrival in 1951 he heard friends of his grandfather talking about how the recently arrived Puerto Ricans were ruining the city. This piqued his interest, and he spent the next couple of days at a Puerto Rican marketplace set up under the elevated tracks of the Grand Central Railroad at 112th Street and 5th Avenue, (15) and decided to serve as a priest in a Puerto Rican parish in the archdiocese of New York. He was assigned to Incarnation parish in Washington Heights. He learned Spanish at Berlitz, astonishing his Irish pastor with the speed at which he mastered the language, and he perfected it by hanging out on the street. He was revered by his Puerto Rican parishioners for his piety and, no doubt, for the compliment he paid them of being genuinely interested in them and their language, culture, and island. Illich traveled extensively in Puerto Rico by horseback, visiting the small villages in the hills and saying Mass. If he had a regret in those years, it was that he felt he had been able to connect less with the clergy in New York. He had, however, forged a rather remarkable relationship with Cardinal Spellman, well known for his conservative ways, who was to actively encourage and protect him. Illich’s parish years came to a close in 1956 with a massive fiesta of San Juan, the patron saint of Puerto Rico that he helped organize which brought together some 35,000 Puerto Ricans at Fordham University. Cardinal Spellman was the principal speaker, and the event served as a coming-out party for the Puerto Rican community in the U.S.

Illich’s success in ministering to the Puerto Ricans had led to an appointment as the Vice Rector of the Catholic University of Puerto Rico at Ponce where he created a school to train American priests and religious to serve their Spanish-speaking communities in the U.S., not only by learning their language, but something of the world they were coming from. This appointment was followed by a seat on the school board of the island, a post which was to have a significant impact on his career because he could not help but reflect on whether compulsory schooling was serving the island’s people well. And he made a point of keeping this educational work which he considered political separate from his priestly ministry. “I didn’t want,” he tells us, “to get mixed up in a conflict between the priestly office of making the other-worldly unity and brotherhood of the liturgy real and my personal stance as a politician.”(16)

In 1959, Spellman named him the youngest monsignor in the United States, perhaps to provide him with a mantle of authority to compensate for his youth, but the next year he came into conflict with the two Catholic bishops of Puerto Rico because of their plan to create a political party to oppose the governor for not forbidding the sale of contraceptives. Illich felt that the church should not meddle this way, mixing politics and religion. This confrontation led to his leaving Puerto Rico. His principle adversary, however, was not long after removed from his position.

Illich went back to New York, and based at Fordham University he began planning a school for missionaries that would put his growing convictions about this distinction between ministry and politics into practice. These new missionaries would not only be rigorously trained in Spanish, but made aware of the danger of mixing their Christian message with all sorts of political and cultural baggage. Illich embarked on a long walking and hitchhiking tour of Latin America, looking for a suitable place for his project. He is said to have prevented the distribution of milk powder by missionaries in Columbia who were giving it only to Christians, and in this way have played a role in the death of a dozen children. (17)

He finally settled on Cuernavaca outside of Mexico City. His CIF, or Center for Intercultural Formation which was later to become CIDOC, Center for Intercultural Documentation, had the openly “subversive” purpose of combating the ambitious plans of both the U.S. government with its Alliance for Progress and Peace Corps, and the American Catholic Church rallying to the call of Pope John XXIII to send 10% of its ministers to Latin America, both of which programs, Illich felt, were ill-conceived, with the latter turning American priests and nuns into apostles of the U.S. middle-class.

In founding CIDOC Illich had the support not only of Cardinal Spellman, but that of Sergio Mendez Arceo, the progressive bishop of the diocese of Morelos in which Cuernavaca was located. The school was successful and eventually had a branch in Petropolis in Brazil under its bishop, Helder Camara. Illich, himself, became the first student of its language school, learning, we are told, to speak fluent Portuguese in three weeks, and under the tutelage of Camara immersing himself in Brazilian life and culture by reading and traveling widely.

Illich’s radically questioning the behavior of the institutional church and the structures of society could not help but earn him enemies on the right, and on the left, as well, for he had no taste, as we have been seeing, for any sort of political action carried out under the banner of the Gospel. Opus Dei’s Mexican newspaper, Gente, for example, called him, “That strange, devious and slippery personage, crawling with indefinable nationalities, who is called or claims to be called, Ivan Illich.“ (18) And Daniel Berrigan, a Jesuit active in the anti-war movement, charged him with “a lot of intellectual violence aimed at our religious left.”(19) He attended part of the Second Vatican Council as a consultant to Cardinal Suenens’ commission on the church in the modern world, but left before its conclusion because of the bishops’ failure to speak out on nuclear weapons.

In 1966, Gregoire Lemercier, the Belgian born abbot of a Benedictine monastery in Cuernavaca who was experimenting with the use of psychoanalysis in community life, had been called to Rome by the Congregation of the Defense of the Faith. Conservative elements in the Vatican, no doubt, had their eyes on the progressive goings on in Cuernavaca not only of Lemercier, but its bishop and Illich and all the radical figures from Latin America and the United States that were congregating there at Illich’s center. Ironically Lemercier and Illich did not get along, but Rome probably saw them as expressions of similar tendencies towards excess in the aftermath of the council.

In January, 1967 Illich wrote an article called The Seamy Side of Charity which had appeared in the Jesuit magazine America which had the express purpose of torpedoing the forces in the American church who were about to meet to try to reinvigorate their missionary initiatives in Latin America. This could have only intensified his enemies’ desires to get rid of him. That same year Illich had seen formal Roman complaints about him compiled, he felt, with the help of the C.I.A., and by June the Vatican had moved against Lemercier, forcing him to choose between psychoanalysis and the Benedictines. In November, the reactionary Archbishop of Puebla wrote to Cardinal Spellman asking for Illich’s removal. Spellman died on December 20, 1967, and less than two weeks later more letters arrived at the chancery in New York, including one from Alfredo Ottaviani, former head of the Congregation of the Defense of the Faith, asking for his removal. (20) That same month Illich wrote to Pope Paul: “With all respect and humility I beg Your Holiness, that if I have failed in any way against faith or morality, to communicate to me how I have so failed, disposed as I am to immediately retract my mistakes.”(21)

On April 20, 1968 Illich addressed a meeting of the Inter-American Student Projects, a coalition of groups sending student volunteers to help out in Latin America. In his speech there he comes across particularly harsh and judgmental, excoriating his audience for all the damage they will do with their good intentions meddling in Latin America with people and situations they do not understand. This is the strident voice of a man pushed to the breaking point. On June 10, he was summoned to Rome. As Illich told the story to Francine du Plessix Gray, his Roman visit played out as half high drama and half farce. His interrogators at the Congregation for the Defense of the Faith were reluctant to tell him their names, and the questions they addressed to him were of the sort he could not answer without incriminating himself or others. Therefore, he refused to answer, and Franjo Cardinal Seper, head of the Congregation, told him, “Get going, get going, and never come back!” which Illich realized as he reached the street, was a quote from Dostoyevsky’s story of The Grand Inquisitor. (22) He did, however, come away with a copy of the questions addressed to him.

On July 25, Pope Paul issued his ill-fated encyclical on birth control, and Illich and Mendez Arceo joined the chorus of objections against it. (23) In 1969 a decree of the Congregation forbade priests and religious from attending CIDOC, but it was hardly a ban that would have crippled the school for a large percentage of its students were not subject to it and of the majority of those who were, many were probably inclined to ignore it. Illich countered this move by giving the New York Times a copy of the embarrassing questions from his attempted interrogation at the Congregation for the Defense of the Faith.

In March 1969, Illich, however, felt it was time to resign from active priestly ministry because having become a “notorious” cleric it would no longer be possible to avoid confusion between his priestly calling to symbolize the unity of the Christian community and his work at CIDOC, but remarkably he retained his commitment to celibacy and to saying the Office, and most importantly remained a believing Catholic.

Sometime between his June visit to Rome and his resignation he had a meeting, or some sort of communication, with Pope Paul VI, for much later, in 1996, at a talk given at the American Catholic Philosophical Association, he said: I made a promise to Pope Paul VI twenty-five years ago: Since he believed that I was a dangerous figure in the Church, I agreed to abstain from speaking to groups of priests, brothers and women religious.”

The ban on priests and religious coming to CIDOC was lifted, but Illich was already shifting his attention to a more secular audience. 1970, for example, saw the publication of Deschooling Society where he launched a critical analysis meant to show that schools as institutions defeated the very purpose for which they were established. This was perhaps Illich’s most widely read book of social criticism, and was followed by a series of similar studies of other modern institutions whose omnipresence often exempted them from scrutiny which included Energy and Equity and Medical Nemesis. These projects had long been in gestation at CIDOC, and subject to intensive seminars and partial and preliminary drafts. In the case of schooling Illich’s analysis stretches back to his years in Puerto Rico. Those early years had also seen essays criticizing the institutional church, but with his new shift of focus, his attention seemed to turn to secular institutions, and a silence falls over his criticisms of the church. This silence may have been due in part to his promise to Pope Paul, but we will not go too far astray, I think, if we see it as the result, as well, of finally reacting to the intense pressure which he was subjected to and deciding to leave a leadership role in the institutional church in order to continue his work, and maintain his psychological and spiritual peace.

His trenchant criticisms of some of Western society’s major structures set off wide and often acrimonious debates, and Illich was in great demand, giving countless lectures and interviews at a dizzying pace. By the mid-70s he and the staff at CIDOC decided to wind down their activities. They had done what they had set out to do, and at times they were in physical danger because of the positions they took, and Illich felt that if he left, its non-credentialed staff would likely be displaced by professional academics, and so change the character of the place. The Center, therefore, saved enough money to give everyone one and a half times their yearly salary as severance pay, and then closed its doors with a grand fiesta in 1976. One might also surmise that after 15 years Illich had arrived at a point personally where he felt it was time to move on.

After his intensive activity in the ‘70s he began to disappear from public view. Part of this seemed to be his conscious intention. He had given up his ecclesiastical audience, as we saw, and now he deliberately turned away from the limelight, refusing to give interviews, or appear on television. He had begun to feel in regard to his lectures, he said, like a jukebox where the audience pressed a button and he automatically played the selected song, while he personally was waiting until he could get to the discussion afterwards.

He continued to teach in the United States and Germany, but would not accept any permanent positions, and he continued to lecture widely, and his intensive intellectual questing remained unabated. But a new phase of his work was beginning. He had criticized society’s institutions, but now he began to ask himself how they had arisen, and he literally wanted to step outside of the Western world and gain another vantage point from which to see them more clearly. He thought of learning Japanese for this purpose, and he traveled to India, hoping that an Asian language would grant him the necessary objectivity. He concluded, however, that his brain no longer had the capacity to master these tongues with the degree necessary for such a project. Then it dawned on him that there was another way he could gain the outside vantage point he was looking for. History. If he could step back in time, he could try to see the roots of Western institutions in their earliest beginnings, and he had the tools for such an adventure at hand in his long-standing love of the church writers of the 12th century, and in his command of the Latin language which had been the language of his philosophical and theological studies in Rome. He even began to take notes in Latin. So far from abandoning the work of the ‘70s, he began a new stage of it. He would immerse himself and selected groups of students in the 12th century, and not only get a glimpse of how the modern world would have looked to a person of those times, but to discern the emergence of the institutions we now take for granted.

Somewhere in the 1980s his outer, always rather impetuous activities received a check in the form of what was probably cancer which he refused to have treated in the conventional way lest it destroy his ability to talk and to work, but lived with it and tried to keep on going forward. His right cheek eventually blossomed with a tumor the size of a small cauliflower, and he dealt with what was likely serious and habitual pain by smoking opium. To what degree he explored alternative remedies and what remedies might have been available to him remains unclear except for the use of acupuncture, as is the degree in which his illness impacted his work. The tumor impeded his eating and one friend claimed his only culinary pleasures were soup and sucking chocolate off of strawberries. (24) He still wandered widely, taught seminars in which he initiated his students into the insights that could be found in an immersion in the Middle Ages, stayed with his friends for extended conversations, and continued the work that he had pursued most of his life. He died in Bremen, Germany, on December 2, 2002.

Illich was 6’3” tall, a man who did not stroll, but raced through life. He was someone who left the impression of knowing everyone, and who effortlessly was in contact with the most known figures in the fields that he worked in. He was much like a natural phenomenon, a lightning storm, with his ideas always flashing. Indeed, it is probably fair to say that he did not laboriously seek for new ideas, but they came to him, often in such abundance that the problem he faced was how to deal with them. He could, for example, and often did, overwhelm his listeners with a torrent of information, but interestingly, sometimes the details like phone numbers and biographical minutiae were wrong. He was even called dyslectic. He told stories well with a sense of drama, and lectured with flair. “ I speak as a xenocryst” (i.e., a crystal embedded in rock) he told his audience at the American Catholic Philosophical Association, but how exact the details were of these stories was another matter. He recounted, for example, that one of the great moments of his life, “when I was both proud of myself and humbled as never before” was when he was 26 and received a call from the Institute of Advanced Studies at Princeton. Jacques Maritain had been felled by a heart attack, and they asked him if he could take over Maritain’s course on St. Thomas’ De ente et essentia. We have already seen how he had met Maritain in Rome, and it is likely he had visited him in Princeton where Maritain kept an open house, a minor version of the life he led at Meudon in France before the war. But when we focus on the story we are led, not to deny its overall truthfulness, but the accuracy of its details. Illich turned 26 in September of 1952, but Maritain’s heart attack was in March, 1954, and it would not have been the Institute of Advanced Studies that would have contacted him because Maritain was not at the Institute, but at the Department of Philosophy from which, however, he had retired in 1952. His long-time friend, Lee Hoinacki, recalls how when Illich cited the Summa of St. Thomas in Tools for Conviviality, he cited him incorrectly. (25)

Illich was a man in whom insight ruled. One friend likened him to a bird with a keen far-seeing eye and marveled how he could know the things that he did. (26) Harvey Cox, who had taught in Cuernavaca, describes how Illich would come into his room, lie down on the carpet, ask him about the last three sentences he had written, let loose with a barrage of ideas, and then get up and go off to the next room. Illich himself tells us that he was fortunate in his work to meet the right person at the right time, but much of that good fortune was innate. (27) But the counterpart of this powerful intuition could have been his impulsive impatience and outspokenness with ideas he saw as wrong which led him into conflicts with people, some of which he tried to resolve. When, for example, he first met his future publisher Marion Boyars at a conference he said, “I do not like publishers; I don’t want to talk to you.” But at the end of the evening he sought her out and they quickly became friends. (28)

While Illich was well-grounded in theology and philosophy, his predilection among the sacred sciences was ecclesiology and liturgy, and more and more he saw himself as a historian, and while he paid homage to Maritain, and through him to St. Thomas, his own work was rarely directly philosophical or theological. When René Voillaume, the founder of the Little Brothers of Jesus and a friend of Maritain, found Illich in Cuernavaca asleep with a massive tome of St. Thomas open on his stomach, Voillaume exclaimed how wonderful it was to see a younger man studying St. Thomas. Illich responded, “Mon père it’s more like a linguistic exercise, a beautiful walk up and down through mental cloisters... and for the sake of the language alone.” Voillaume exclaimed how terrible a sentiment this was from a student of Jacques Maritain. (29) Later Illich commented somewhat enigmatically that what Maritain meant for him was to allow him “to have gotten beyond his intention and discovered Thomas as a magnificent shell, and as a great person and a mystic.” Perhaps he meant that Maritain provided him with an epistemological framework within which he could pursue his many intellectual interests without fracturing into intellectual incoherence. But in many ways it is probably fair to say that Illich was not a philosopher or theologian in the conventional sense. Illich also did not think much of the use of Maritain’s political philosophy in Latin America, and accused Maritain “as a very old man” of finding “relevance in being a political theorist.”

Illich was a man of mercurial and genuine brilliance, yet this brilliance tended to dazzle, leaving people with the impression they had glimpsed something magnificent and valuable, but they were not quite sure how to articulate it. As his friend Carl Mitcham put it, “In lecture or conversation listeners are drawn into the circle of his passionate attention and readily mesmerized by his masterful rhetoric, confident that they have learned something profound, even when they are not able to say precisely what.” He often spoke “elliptically and circuitously.” (30) “(W)hen asked why he used complicated expressions in English, (he) replied: “Brain incompetence.”” (31)

He was a man who was constantly reinventing himself, yet with a real continuity with what he had done before. He would say, for example, that what he had written in Deschooling Society or Medical Nemesis he later, and indeed, not much later, saw as incomplete, and in need of deepening. He leaves the impression of someone who hated to be pinned down. Asked once in Paris, “Do you come here often?” he replied, “I find it difficult to make a general statement about the way I lead my life.” (32) Illich was not about to be pigeon-holed by mentors or friends, praise or blame, or even himself.

We may roughly divide Illich’s writings into three parts. The first runs from the late 1950s through the 1960s, and is summed up in a collection of his articles in Celebration of Awareness (1970). This could be called his ecclesiastical stage, that is, Illich speaking as a churchman.

With Deschooling Society in 1971 he entered into an intensive, more secular second period where he radically criticized society’s structures, and turned to a more historical analysis that looked for the roots of those structures. Finally, in a third stage, he returned to a more theological perspective, seeing the institutional church as the mother and model of our Western institutions.

In 1959, the year that Pope John XXIII announced to a surprised church and world his idea to call an ecumenical council, Illich wrote a draft of an article that would later become “The Vanishing Clergymen.” This article appeared after the Second Vatican Council in revised form in 1967, and is an excellent way to see his ideas on church reform. Absent the initial draft of his article, we have no way of knowing how the Council changed his thinking. The Council was to usher in a deep polarization between church conservatives and progressives that has over the intervening decades endured, hardened and become institutionalized. What is striking about Illich’s essay, however, is his avoidance of either pole of this polarization. Instead we see a marriage of fidelity to the church as the body of Christ together with a call for great changes in its structure, yet changes that “can now be visualized in terms consistent with the most radically traditional theology.” (33) He is going to talk about radical reform of the role of the clergy in those church structures, an agenda that is anathema to the extreme conservatives, while at the same time criticizing the suggestions of the left on the priesthood as “neither sufficiently revolutionary” when they talk of a married clergy, nor “priests engaged in social action or revolution,” “nor sufficiently faithful to fundamental traditional positions – which I would not like to see compromised...” (34) by which Illich means freely chosen priestly celibacy, the episcopal structure of the church, and the permanence of priestly ordination. Rather, what is at stake is “a radical reorganization” of church structures which in regard to the clergy means a “re-examination of the relation between sacramental ministry and full-time personnel...” (35) The church as a proliferating clerical bureaucracy must give way to the “ordination of self-supporting laymen.” (36) Rather than married priests integrated into a dysfunctional clerical system, such adult often married laymen ordained for ministry would preside over small communities. “I foresee the face-to-face meeting of families around a table, rather than the impersonal attendance of a crowd around an altar.” (37) We should be clear about what Illich is saying. The use of married clergy, as well as sisters and lay people in pastoral roles, can simply become “so many pusillanimous attempts to rejuvenate a dying structure.” (38) Illich’s ordained laymen point to the need for nothing less than the declericalization of the church in which the top-heavy clerical structure gives way to a church rooted in the lives of the faithful.

This essay also presents us with several passages that could be read as autobiographical asides that can confirm the portrait of Illich that began to emerge above. He writes, for example, “Should I, a man totally at the service of the Church, stay in the structure in order to subvert it, or leave in order to live the model of the future? The Church needs men seeking this kind of conscious and critical awareness – men deeply faithful to the Church, living a life of insecurity and risk, free from hierarchical control, working for the eventual “disestablishment” of the Church from within.” (39) And what might be taken as a commentary on his own vocation to celibacy and the priesthood: “Today the Christian who renounces marriage and children for the kingdom’s sake seeks no abstract or concrete reason for his decision. His choice is pure risk in faith, the result of the intimate and mysterious experience of his heart.” (40)

The ideas that Illich is presenting here are not theological novelties, and were not, even in those days, but rather represent a basic vision of the church very much in accord with the nature of the church, and expressing how the church was meant to be. Yet if such a basic vision were taken seriously, it would radically reform the institution.

If Illich could and did criticize the church, which as a spiritual reality he was so close to, and as an organization he was so intimately familiar with, as we have just seen, then it would be relatively easy for him to go on and criticize other major Western institutions. And this, in fact, is what he did. Indeed, with his vision sharpened by his criticism of the church, he could turn to schools and see that in many ways they had taken the place of the church as a hoped for means of salvation. While some of this connection between the church and schools is still visible in his Deschooling Society, it is more clearly seen in an earlier essay, “School: the Sacred Cow,” a graduation speech given at the University of Puerto Rico sometime before 1970. “Only if we understand the school system,” he later writes in an introduction to this article, “as the central myth-making ritual of industrial societies can we explain the deep need for it, the complex myth surrounding it, and the inextricable way in which schooling is tied into the self-image of contemporary man.” (41) And it is this myth-making after the pattern of religions, that interests us rather than his critique of schooling, itself, i.e., that most public money appropriated for schools is spent on a small minority with the majority consigned to a sense of educational inferiority, themes that would be developed at length in his Deschooling Society.

Let’s listen to Illich in full flow, though perhaps not at his diplomatic best considering his audience:

“Puerto Rico has adopted a new religion. Its doctrine is that education is a product of the school, a product which can be defined by numbers.” (42)

“From governor to jíbaro, Puerto Rico now accepts the ideology of its teachers as it once accepted the theology of its priests.” (43)

“The begowned academic professors whom we have witnessed today evoke the ancient procession of clerics and little angels on the day of Corpus Christi. The Church, holy, catholic, apostolic, is rivaled by the school, accredited, compulsory, untouchable, universal. Alma Mater has replaced Mother Church.” (44)

“Participation in a “production system,” of no matter what kind, has always threatened the prophetic function of the Church as it now threatens the educational function of the school.” (45)

It is easy to see how Illich could have deepened and sharpened his criticism of the church in “The Vanishing Clergymen” by looking at its tendency to become a “production system” of salvation, something he was going to do, but only at that third and final stage of his work. Now, for a variety of reasons, he is on the cusp of turning to a more secular arena and applying the scalpel of his radical analysis to its sacred cows of schools, health care, etc.

Once again, in these secular arenas, Illich is making simple statements, even obvious ones, but statements that go to the root of things. What caused the intensive debates around them was that he took these statements seriously and felt we should act upon them. Let’s look at Deschooling Society. Here and there we will still find traces of the comparison between school and church that played a major role in “School: The Sacred Cow.”

“I am reminded of the late Middle ages, when the demand for Church services outgrew a lifetime, and “Purgatory” was created to purify souls under the pope’s control before they could enter eternal peace.” (46) This is a statement that should be read, I think, not theologically as if it were expressing Illich’s views on the existence and nature of purgatory, but structurally and institutionally.

“School is a ritual of initiation which introduces the neophyte to the sacred race of progressive consumption, a ritual of propitiation whose academic priests mediate between the faithful and the gods of privilege and power, a ritual of expiation which sacrifices its dropouts, branding them as scapegoats of underdevelopment.” (47)

“They have been schooled to the belief in rising expectations and can now rationalize their growing frustration outside school by accepting their rejection from scholastic grace. They are excluded from Heaven because, once baptized, they did not go to church. Born in original sin, they are baptized into first grade, but go to Gehenna (which in Hebrew means “slum”) because of their personal faults.” (48)

“The totally destructive and constantly progressive nature of obligatory instruction will fulfill its ultimate logic unless we begin to liberate ourselves right now from our pedagogical hubris, our belief that man can do what God cannot, namely, manipulate others for their own salvation.” (49)

But the thrust, however, of his arguments is directed to schools, themselves, for Illich has entered the second stage of the evolution of his thought.

“Schools themselves pervert the natural inclination to grow and learn into the demand for instruction... they belong near the extreme of the institutional spectrum occupied by total asylums. Even the producers of body counts kill only bodies. By making men abdicate the responsibility for their own growth, school leads many to a kind of spiritual suicide.” (50)

“Schools are designed on the assumption that there is a secret to everything in life; that the quality of life depends on knowing that secret; that secrets can be known only in orderly successions; and that only teachers can properly reveal these secrets.” (51)

Illich felt that while such insights may have appeared revolutionary in the 1960s, later they became almost commonplace. Today there is a wide consensus that schools don’t work, but public discourse on the matter rarely seems to extend beyond the proposal of the usual remedies that would fix the system: longer school days, a longer school year, universal preschool, more money for teachers, more competent teachers, and on and on. In short, schools can be made better by more of the same.

Later Illich realized that his initial analysis did not go deep enough. His starting point of comparing schools to churches had led him to see that schools should be disenfranchised simply as a matter of justice. Why take tax dollars and spend them on a minority while the majority of students fall by the wayside and are convinced that they somehow have not succeeded in school. But then he saw that the whole society was being schooled, and adult education or even home school taken as another miniaturized form of institutional schooling was just making the problem more pervasive. We have internalized school so that it changed our perception about learning, itself, and made us look to others, turning us into the consumers of an endless series of educational products. Although Illich saw a widespread recognition that schools were failing, he was surprised that people could continue to tolerate such a defective system. (52) It is even more surprising that almost 40 years after Deschooling Society during which schools had continued to proliferate and continued to fail, they continue to be tolerated. Perhaps that tolerance can be seen as an indication that while schools continue to fail in regard to education, they are succeeding very well in conditioning minds to live within our existing institutions, and to be genuinely unable to think outside their boundaries.

After schools Illich turned to health care. “The medical establishment has become a major threat to health,” Illich wrote at the beginning of his 1976 Medical Nemesis. He talks of the prevalence of the iatrogenic disease, that is, physician-caused disease, a problem that has only increased since the time he wrote, but in his hands it becomes a multivalent concept applied not only to the clinical iatrogenesis which is caused by doctors, hospitals and pharmaceutical companies, but what he calls social iatrogenesis which happens “when all suffering is “hospitalized” and homes become inhospitable to birth, sickness, and death; when the language in which people could experience their bodies is turned into bureaucratic gobbledygook; or when suffering, mourning, and healing outside the patient role are labeled a form of deviance.” (53) And beyond these is a cultural iatrogenesis which has “undermined the ability of individuals to face their reality, to express their own values, and to accept inevitable and often irremediable pain and impairment, decline, and death.” (54) The upshot has been an internalization of this iatrogenetic mentality, leaving us with iatrogenetic bodies in which we conceive our own bodies according to the norms set down by the medical profession, bodies constantly in need of more health care products. These kinds of bodies are the perfect companions of our minds conditioned to the passive consumption of educational products.

It is worth examining in more detail the transitions in Illich’s thought from stage 1 to stage 2. We can account for some of the differences we find between them because of the different audiences addressed, and by the changes that Illich, himself, underwent as he moved from being an officially sanctioned clergyman to a wandering historian and social philosopher without portfolio. But let’s probe deeper. In 1996, addressing the American Catholic Philosophical Association, he said: “First, I shall be seventy this year, but I have never before addressed an assembly of philosophers. Second, I made a promise to Pope Paul VI twenty-five years ago: Since he believed that I was a dangerous figure in the Church, I agreed to abstain from speaking to groups of priests, brothers and women religious. This is the first time, then, in all these years, that I face a Catholic association.” (55) So there was on his part a deliberate turning away from his usual ecclesiastical audience whether because of his promise to Pope Paul, or because of his ill-treatment at the hands of the institutional church, and his desire not to be a focal point of contention which would confuse his priestly role with the controversial positions on secular matters that he was going to advance.

But Illich had not given up his faith along with his official position in the church, and this faith continued to inform the way he saw the world around him, and influenced this analysis of society’s structures. It was the lodestar that oriented him to the ultimate meaning of life, and if he felt it was no longer appropriate to express it in a formal theological language, given his subject matter and audience, it was still present informing and guiding his judgment.

This allows us to discern in his second stage a dimension of what Lee Hoinacki described as Illich as an apophatic theologian called to use a cryptic language in addressing a secular audience in which philia or friendship would stand for Christian love, and voyages back to the Middle Ages would initiate people into a new way of seeing, which in this context might be described as faith informing his historical judgment, but remaining largely invisible in his work. This should not be understood as some sort of conscious artifice meant to mislead his new audience, but rather an attempt to find a way to address this audience in a language that it could understand. Undeniably, however, there is a tension in this way of proceeding since faith still informs his ultimate perspective, and has an inner dynamism to express itself openly. Another simpler way to put this is that our judgments about social structures rest ultimately on our judgments about the nature and purpose of human life. If Illich no longer felt free to talk as a theologian, which he defined as one sanctioned by the church to publicly reflect on the meaning of revelation, he could still speak as a historian, and could still witness as a historian to the surprising novelty that came into the world with Christianity.

It was not until the end of Illich’s life that he began to speak openly about the church and the need for the reform of its structures. We have now arrived at our fundamental question. In the last years of his life his attention turned more and more to the discrepancy between what he called the church as it, or the church as an institution, and the church as she, the church of Jesus the Incarnate Word that he believed in, the church of persons held together by bonds of faith and love.

Briefly in a series of interviews with David Cayley in 1988 that were turned into public broadcasts, and then into a book, Ivan Illich in Conversation, he began to talk about the theme of the corruption of Christianity in which the best becomes the worst. It was as if the time of the promise he had made to Paul VI was past, and he began to slowly move towards articulating his thoughts on this matter, which must have been simmering in the back of his mind for many years. Yet it is entirely possible that he never would have addressed this issue more deeply without the prodding of Cayley who convinced him to do another series of interviews about the matter which finally appeared in The Rivers North of the Future. Early on Illich, beginning before the Second Vatican Council, had criticized the institutional church, and then had gone on to actively and vocally oppose what he saw as its misguided meddling in politics. But then for a variety of reasons he turned away from this sort of explicit ecclesiastical analysis to an examination of modern Western institutions, only to discover that the church had been the pioneer and model of Western institutionalization, and so, finally he turned explicitly to his critiques, now historically deepened, of the institutional church.

Illich had seen that with Christianity something new had entered the world, “that the most important service to the world and to others consisted in turning around one’s own heart.” (56) But with that revolutionary light there had come the possibility of its perversion into “a horrifying darkness, which no other culture has ever known.” (57) In this way he saw confirmed the old adage, “the corruption of the best is the worst.” At the historical root of the frightening societal structures that afflict us today Illich discovered the institutionalization of Christianity in which “(t)hrough the attempt to insure, to guarantee, to regulate Revelation, the best becomes the worst.” (58)

In 1992 in an epilogue to these conversations he said in regard to this primordial and chilling insight: “I can say strongly that, at a basic level, issues touching upon the historicity of medical care, of education, of transportation, of monetarization of wage labor, can’t be discussed and are not discussed in any Christian church as an issue of agenda, the public agenda, and I don’t know anybody there who even participates in the conversations which go on around the world on these subjects. On the second level, which is the historical source of these ideas in a perverse transmutation of a Christian vocation and message, I have not even found a first conversational partner within any of the established churches.” (59)

After many years of practicing his apophatic theology Illich, in The Rivers North of the Future, speaks plainly and starts off with an explicit profession of faith summing up the heart of the Christian message: “I believe that the Incarnation makes possible a surprising and entirely new flowering of love and knowledge. For Christians the Biblical God can now be loved in the flesh... A new dimension of love has opened... Before I was limited by the people into which I was born and the family in which I was raised. Now I can choose whom I will love and where I will love.” (60)

But precisely because we are faced with something new and beautiful, a deeply personal way to love God and to love each other, the possibility opens up that we can let our vision falter, and turn our eyes from the brightness of that call to personal love. “There is a temptation to try to manage and, eventually, to legislate this new love, to create an institution that will guarantee it, insure it, and protect it by criminalizing its opposite.” (61) This deadly danger is institutionalization, first by the church, and later by the many secular organizations that it helped give rise to. Our direct and intimate personal involvement is always threatened to be swallowed up by the blindness of institutional structures.

That is the essence of Illich’s insight, and it can be illustrated in a variety of ways. In the early ages of the church, for example, Christians took strangers into their homes with alacrity and joy in order to fulfill the command of Christ that if you do something for the least of my brethren, you do it to me. But once the church became an established part of society, this freely given hospitality began to give way to “houses for foreigners.” “Such care was no longer the free choice of the householder; it was the task of an institution.” (62) Illich felt that the original call to an I-thou relationship is transformed into a new phenomena, one which could not have existed without Christianity, a proliferating network of institutions in Christian Europe meant to take care of people in need, and this transformation was a perversion. (63) The stage has been set for the creation of the modern service society which in the guise of serving people, serves needs instead, and makes those it serves the consumers of its various products. “(T)he Gospel is institutionalized, and love is transmogrified into claims for service.” (64)

Illich sees another illustration of this fundamental theme in the notion of contingency. Contingency is a distinctively Christian idea in which we perceive the universe as created by God, and held by God in existence moment by moment. He found a particular manifestation of this idea in the eleventh century, but he, no doubt, would admit that it could be traced through the New Testament into the Old Testament starting with the Book of Genesis. The historical development of this idea, however, is rather accidental to the use he wishes to make of it. “(O)nly in a society in which people had strongly experienced the world as lying in the hands of God... it would be possible, later on, to take that world out of God’s hands.” (65) Once again a liberating insight coming from Christianity can be perverted into its opposite, which is no longer a heedlessness of God, but the conscious embrace of a world without God.

Since what we have before us are transcripts of conversations, the elliptical and evocative nature of Illich’s style is magnified. He is using history to illustrate his thesis about the corruption of Gospel values, giving rise to institutionalization in the church, and the rise of Western institutions rather than using history to demonstrate that this is so although he is convinced that this is possible, and has been done elsewhere by the scholars he is depending on.

The invention of the horse cart, he tells us in another example, increased the pulling power of horses, and thus the speed of plowing, and thus allowed the consolidation of tiny hamlets near the fields into larger and more distant villages. These villages, in turn, could support the churches with resident parish priests, and this, in turn, fostered new types of religious practices. Church legislation developed that stipulated that the parishioners should go to confession to their parish priest and accuse themselves of their sins once a year, and this under the penalty of grevious sin. Sin was in this way made a matter of criminal justice, and an interior forum created in contrast to the already existing outer courts. “Church law became a norm, whose violation led to condemnation in hell – a fantastic achievement and, I would argue, one of the most interesting forms of perversion of that act of liberation from the law for which the gospel stands.” (66) And he clarifies this: “I do not want to be understood here as speaking against confession. I practise it. I am only trying to indicate a crucial moment in the transformation of the impiety which I commit by betraying love, which is the meaning of sin, into a crime which can be judged in a juridical fashion within an institution.” (67)

This new setting also helped give rise to the use of oaths so contrary at first sight to the Gospel mandate against all oath-taking. The high point of this kind of oath-taking was reached in the Middle Ages both in regard to marriage and to the oaths citizens took in regard to their city. The remarkable novelty of two people whose consent to each other constituted marriage, which was the fruit of Christianity, is now legalized. “The marriage oath legalizes love, and sin becomes a juridical category. Christ came to free us from the law, but Christianity allowed the legal mentality to be brought into the very heart of love.” (68) The bottom line is this: “Once the sinner is obligated to seek legal remission of a crime, his sorrow and his hope in God’s mercy becomes a secondary issue. This legalization of love opens the individual to new fears.” (69)

From the horse cart to the criminalization of sin stretches an elaborate chain of historical causes and effects which would take much effort to elucidate in detail and demonstrate, but Illich’s underlying hypothesis is solid. There has been a relentless institutionalization of the personal in Christianity, and he will present it over and over again in various concrete forms. Icons, for example, were meant to point to the realities of faith, but in the absence of a sense of the transcendent we are left with virtual space and a myriad of images that point nowhere. Or a new view of the body was brought about by the Christian belief of the resurrection of the body, which would give way over time to a medically induced iatrogenic body in which we see our bodies as the medical profession tells us to see them.

We are becoming familiar with Illich’s style of reasoning. “The heart of the New Testament message is... that God not only became words in the mouths of his prophets but also became flesh in the womb of a little girl.” (70) And the church, itself, is a mysterious extension of that incarnation which comes about by baptism, and by the Eucharist, and the “mouth-to-mouth kiss which was also part of the early Christian celebration of the Lord’s Supper,” (71) which symbolizes our call to relate to each other as persons, to see the other person in the light of Christ. But the church “attempted to safeguard the newness of the Gospel by institutionalizing it, and in this way the newness got corrupted.” (72) The incarnation of God, which culminated in the bodily resurrection of Jesus, allowed the alteration of our perception of our flesh and blood bodies, and the possibility of a truly personal relationship in love that can extend beyond our families to all people. But every such elevation allows the possibility of its own corruption.

Many years after “The Sacred Cow,” Illich has returned in a deeper way to the thoughts inspired by his contact with schooling in Puerto Rico. In order to understand what he was seeing there he came to view schooling as a ritual, and rituals “have an ability to generate in their practitioners a deep adherence to convictions which may be, internally, highly contradictory, so that somehow, the adherence to the belief is stronger than most people’s capacity to question what they believe.” (73) If the rain dancers, he tells us, fail to bring rain by their dances, they feel that they should dance all the harder. But in the case of schooling we are confronted with a universal ritual which we can find in the Americas, or Asia, or Africa, or in democracies or state socialisms. The relationship between schooling and the church, which had before seemed a vague analogy, began to appear to have “a closer and more deeply determined” connection. (74) “The Church made attendance at various rituals compulsory.” (75) And this inculcated a belief “that you need an organized institution to make people competent to understand what is good for them and their community, that knowledge does not come from living but from educatio, the milk of wisdom flowing from the breasts of an institution.” (76)

Let’s try to sum up the salient points we have seen.

1. Illich was a man of faith, and he was also a radical critic of our modern Western institutions, including the church. This combination of faith and radical criticism is highly significant. It distinguishes him from who we could call the ultra-conservative Catholics who closely identify faith with the church as it presently exists or existed in the past, and thus have an aversion to deeply criticizing it. And it must be distinguished from their counterparts – who are often born out of a reaction to this identification – who are the ultra-progressives who criticize the institutional church, but end up losing their faith.

This combination of faith and criticism that we find in Illich opens up a possibility of a third way between the small minorities of ultra-conservatives and ultra-progressives who have contributed greatly to the polarization that has existed in the church since the Second Vatican Council. This third way is probably much more in accord with numerous Catholics for whom neither extreme appeals, but have yet to articulate what it is that they most wish for. It is a way in which a thirst for a deeper faith and a realization how dire the need is for a reform of church structures can come together.

2. We have seen how the trajectory of Illich’s thought took him from his initial criticism of the church to a deeper criticism of Western institutions, and finally to a still deeper critique of the church as the mother and model of these institutions. His ability to articulate these sorts of radical criticism is rare. It takes a certain alternative vision based on an outside vantage point.

Illich helped to bring to our attention the fact that our secular institutions have reached a tipping point in which they begin more and more to defeat the very purpose for which they had been established. Is this analysis correct? Illich felt that its correctness was being seen by more and more people as time went on, but if this is true, why do we acquiesce in the face of a situation which is only getting worse? We may look for an answer in the direction of what he discussed in regard to the emergence of a new stage of our relationships with institutions. If in the 1960s there was a desire, however naive, to confront, criticize and possibly reform these institutions, by the 1980s Illich felt there was a shift in which people began to conceive of themselves as subsystems. But if this is true, then we can see how much harder it would be to stand outside of an institution and radically criticize it because we feel we are an integral part of it. (77)

3. Illich carried out the same sort of radical criticism of the church, and as he did of society’s other institutions, and perhaps his leaving the exercise of a public priestly ministry helped him to see the church from the outside and more clearly. But the principle outside vantage point from which he launched his criticism was, as we saw, history. These historical arguments remained, however, undeveloped, perhaps due, in part, to the illness that overshadowed the last part of his life. He also showed a genuine reticence in discussing these matters, perhaps because he knew how easy it would be to misinterpret his criticism of the church in terms of a rejection of the church, itself.

Is Illich’s criticism of the church valid? We need to distinguish his basic criticism from its historical argumentation. His basic criticism is that the church, which is above all a matter of personal relationships, becomes buried under a welter of human institutional forms that turn the personal into the impersonal and juridical. As in his criticism of other institutions, and their tipping points, I believe that many people would agree with this criticism of the church. The church, in fact, in its institutional structures, inserts itself between us and God, and the way we ought to treat each other, and too often obscures and hinders those relationships. It has a knack for alienating people from seeking a deeper union with God and finding comfort in the healing words of Jesus, and reaching out spontaneously and freely to serve Jesus in others. The corruption of the best has, indeed, become the worst.

If the church as a human institution has reached the point of hindering the very purpose for which it was created, we need again to ask why it is so difficult for us to do something about it. Perhaps the answer lies in us seeing ourselves as subsystems of the church, that is, we see ourselves as part of an institution in which we are the subordinate and minority players, and the church is, in fact, the institutional organization itself, and its hierarchical members of popes, bishops and priests. In such a perspective it then appears that a change in the institution ought to come from the top down, but since this is where the problem lies, the kind of radical change necessary does not happen. But if the church first and foremost is not this kind of human bureaucracy, but a way of living the personal mystery of Christ, then our access to this mystery is direct, taking place in our own minds and hearts, and the human institution must be subordinated to this mystery and serve our deeper insertion into it. Once we see that we are the church in this fashion, then we are free to act.

4. One final point about the corruption of the best being the worst. Jacques Maritain once asked himself whether the world was getting better or worse, and concluded that both things were happening. In regard to Illich’s perspective we can put it like this. The dawning of Christianity brings with it the possibility of a new way of seeing our relationship to God and to each other in Christ. But this possibility is an offer of grace that needs to be actualized in the depths of our hearts by our cooperation with it, but this offer of the best makes possible the worst. We, in fact, can turn this best into the worst precisely because it now exists and we can reject it, and pervert it into something unthinkably worse than what existed before. And the more that good grows, the more the possibility exists of this kind of perversion. There is no extrinsic mechanical way, there are no institutional structures that of themselves automatically will make us better. Inner transformation only takes place in our hearts, one person at a time, and the church must be the servant of that transformation.




1. Plessix Gray, du Francine. (1970) Divine Disobedience: Profiles in Catholic Radicalism. NY: Alfred . Knopf.

2. Telegraph p. 48.

3. Ibid.

4. Cayley, David. 1992. Ivan Illich In Conversation. (Conversation) Toronto, Canada: House of Anansi Press Inc. p. 56.

5. Ibid., p. 1.

6. Ibid., p. 250.

7. Ibid., p. 76.

8. Corley, Felix. 2002. The Independent. Dec. 10, 2002.

9. Conversation. p. 80.

10. Inman, Patricia L. 1999. Abstract: An Intellectual Biography of Ivan Illich. March 12, 1999. p.2

11. Telegraph p. 48.

12. Ibid.

13. Conversation. p. 2.

14. Ibid., p. 61.

15. Ibid., p. 84.

16. Ibid., p. 99.

17. The Times, December 05, 2002.

18. Divine Disobedience, p. 269.

19. Ibid., p. 285.

20. Ibid., p. 302.

21. Ibid., p. 304.

22. Ibid., p. 240.

23. Cox, Harvey. Dec 20, 2002. National Catholic Reporter.

24. Warshall, Peter. A Cry for Caritas.

25. Personal communication from Lee Hoinacki.

26. Conversation. p. 55.

27. Ibid., p. 61.

28. Hoinacki, Lee and Carl Mitcham, Editors. 2002. The Challenges of Ivan Illich: A collective Reflection. p. 44.

29. Conversation, p. 151-152.

30. Challenges, p. 13.

31. Telegraph p. 48.

32. Ibid.

33. “The Vanishing Clergyman” in Ivan Illich. (1970) Celebration of Awareness: A Call for Institutional Revolution. Garden City, NY: Doubleday & Company, Inc., p. 69

34. Ibid., p. 70.

35. Ibid., p. 73.

36. Ibid., p. 77.

37. Ibid., p. 82.

38. Ibid., p. 90.

39. Ibid., p. 79.

40. Ibid., p. 88.

41. “School: The Sacred Cow” in Celebration of Awareness, p. 121.

42. Ibid., p. 125.

43. Ibid.

44. Ibid., p. 126-7.

45. Ibid., p. 129.

46. Ivan Illich. (1971) Deschooling Society. NY: Harper & Row, Publishers. p. 43.

47. Ibid., p. 44.

48. Ibid., p. 44-5.

49. Ibid., p. 50.

50. Ibid., p. 60.

51. Ibid., p. 76.

52. Ibid., p. 51.

53. Ivan Illich. (19__) Medical Nemesis. publisher??? p. 41.

54. Ibid., p. 127-8.


56. Conversation, p. 213.

57. Ibid.

58. Ibid., p. 242.

59. Ibid., p. 279.

60. David Cayley. The Rivers North of the Future, p. 47.

61. Ibid.

62. Ibid., p. 54.

63. Ibid., p. 55-6.

64. Ibid., p. 61.

65. Ibid., p. 69.

66. Ibid., p. 90.

67. Ibid., p. 90-1.

68. Ibid., p. 87.

69. Ibid., p. 94.

70. Ibid., p. 106.

71. Ibid., p. 107.

72. Ibid., p. 106.

73. Ibid., p. 140.

74. Ibid., p. 143.

75. Ibid., p. 144.

76. Ibid.

77. Ibid., p. 162-3.