In a recent presentation about pleasure in learning at the AERO conference, a group of us talked about how we moralize pleasure in learning in our culture.
Learning cannot be important, powerful, or “worthy,” unless is it “hard”: boring, stressful, and potentially shaming.
Maybe pleasure is the ultimate judo move in bringing down the Industrial model of education?
Judo (Japanese for “the gentle way”) emphasizes winning in combat by using your opponent’s weight and strength as weapons against him, while preserving your own mental and physical energy. It embodies the principle that good technique can win out over sheer strength. In a judo match, a slight person can overcome a heavier, stronger opponent. There are no kicks or punches. Instead, after a bow to begin the match, players score points by “throwing” their opponent or by using a hold-down, a choke, or an armlock.
Pleasure is ultimately hard to resist.
What do you say?