Jean-Jaques Rousseau, philosopher and composer, wrote 1762 an educational novel which named „Émile“. There he desricbes his educational ideal. His educational ideal shall prevent that the child come under association influence. The teacher may not indoctrinate the pupils. Rousseau demands one of the childish development conformist education. This antiauthoritarian segment in the education shall achieve an aim: „You will learn to think for yourselves“.
But is that right? Will we learn to think for ourselves? In the following text I want to comment on this topic.
Today it is the age of media. Especially the media influence a lot of people. Whatever you want you can find it in the internet. Homeworks, trends and a lot of information. The media tells you what is „in“ at the moment and one day later almost all people have the big sunglasses which Paris Hilton wear last night at a party. Media tells us what kind of music is trendy and a lot of people buy the new disc of Mark Medlock, because he is cool. It is really hard to be individual. When you dont go with the trends, then you are an outsider or something like this. The association is manipulable. We join an opinion but we often haven´t got an own.
Especially in the school. There it is not necessary to think for ourselves. We get the information, a source or something else, and we accept them without to try to get to the bottom of. The teacher give us information, we write them down, maybe we learn it, and that´s it. If you have to analyze a source or a book or something like this you can find a lot of help in the internet or in books. Often we don´t have the chance to think for ourselves because other people do it for us.
independent thinking doesn't exist. Everybody is, by some means or other, influenceable by friends, family, coworker or by the limited perspective which is normal for humans. We are caught in a crossfire of influences and nobody can elude.