All Must Have Prizes
By Melanie Phillips
paperback, 395 pages, (February 1998)
Warner, ISBN: 0-7515-2274-0
British education is in a state of
"meltdown". Throughout the system, from nursery classes
to degree courses, the relationship between teacher and pupil has
been undermined, and the idea that children should be taught a body
of rules at all, whether in maths or grammar, is now taboo in many
schools. Systematic instruction has given way to approximations
and guesswork, resulting in a rising tide of illiteracy. All Must
Have Prizes presents the inside story of a social debacle. The collapse
of education is not viewed in isolation; at the heart of the problem,
claims Melanie Phillips, lies cultural and moral relativism, the
doctrine that no values can be judged to be any better or worse
than any others. She regards the primary effect of this, particularly
in the last 20 years, to be the collapse of the authority of institutions.
Sounding a warning, she offers a blueprint to restore authority
and meaning to society.
The Sunday Times
"an awesome polemic"
"...this is likely to become the most discussed work of social criticism since Allan Bloom's THE CLOSING OF THE AMERICAN MIND."