Pourquoi la presse soutient-elle les écoles Steiner-Waldorf ?


A recent post by Gregoire Perra on a reason why the press in France is so supportive of Steiner education.
I provide a rough translation in a comment below.

La Vérité sur les écoles Steiner-Waldorf

Depuis bien longtemps, la presse française fait preuve envers les écoles Steiner-Waldorf ou les autres émanations de l’Anthroposophie d’une complaisanse confondante. On peut penser, par exemple, à la manière dont, en 2000, des journaux comme Libération, Le Monde, ou d’autres, ont pris la défense de ces écoles au moment où les pouvoirs publics avaient failli prendre les responsabilités qui étaient les leurs à ce sujet. On peut aussi penser à la manière dont, encore dernièrement, Le Monde, Canal +, Rue 89, se sont commis dans des soi-disants reportages sur les écoles Steiner-Waldorf où le parti-pris de sympathie originel était tellement flagrant qu’il aurait dû faire honte à l’ensemble de la profession.

Comment expliquer un tel phénomène ? Certains pourraient soupçonner l’influence que des institutions financières anthroposophiques, comme WELEDA ou la NEF, seraient à même d’exercer. Pour ma part, je crois que l’explication est ailleurs.

En effet, dès la création de…

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  1. Helen

    Why does the press support Waldorf schools?
    by gperra

    For a long time the French press has shown a confusing complaisance.towards Waldorf schools and other anthroposophical projects. Think, for example, of how in 2000, newspapers like Libération, Le Monde, or others, defended these schools when the government failed to take responsibility on this subject. We can also think about how even recently, Le Monde, Canal +, Street 89, committed themselves blatantly in so-called reports on Waldorf schools with a bias of sympathy that ought to shame the entire profession.

    How to explain such a phenomenon? Some might suspect the influence of anthroposophic financial institutions, such WELEDA or NEF, would be able to exercise. For my part, I believe that the explanation lies elsewhere.

    Indeed, since the creation of the first Waldorf school in 1920, Rudolf Steiner explained to his disciples that this form of teaching was what would enable Anthroposophy to become a big movement. How did that happen?

    The cultural elites are still looking to send their own children to separate schools. This anthroposophists have understood this. And they know that supply is short in this area, which offers them a niche where they had the foresight to appear first. They are artists, writers, journalists or politicians; this class of the population that feels itself different aims to provide something special for its children. Being themselves out of the ordinary individuals, they want their children to receive an education that allows them to become like them.

    Thus in Waldorf schools we find many children of media personalities, showbiz, the press, etc. I myself was in a class with the son of billionaire Francis Lai (the one who composed the music of Edith Piaf), while my sister rubbed shoulders with his son the journalist Roger Gicquel. When I was a Waldorf teacher, I taught classes to the offspring of the comic Lagaffe, the theater director Irina Brook (daughter of Peter Brook), and other well-known personalities of the French media scene. We can say that in virtually every class of a Waldorf school there will be at least one child of one of famous people of this sort. I could easily complete this list. This is also why Waldorf schools can boast to their promotion, to have had children in their schools who later became stars or colorful characters, like Sandra Bullock, Jennifer Aniston, or others. It is actually not so much because these schools have allowed them, through their teaching, to become what they have become, but simply because children from these environments benefit themselves from connections in the professional circles of their parents in order to succeed, as is well known.

    Thus, over time, many media personalities have sent their children to Waldorf schools, creating a very favorable word of mouth network in these elite circles. That’s why the Federation of Waldorf Schools now enjoys a full address book: you just need to maintain sufficient diplomacy. Then voila! When it is necessary to ask such and such an Editorial director to supply a journalist to write a favorable report, they will not delve too deeply into problematic aspects that they may have been aware of during the summary investigation they conducted.

    Investigation often amounts to compiling and synthesising data provided by the Federation of Waldorf schools, and questioning the “witnesses” it has presented. Indeed, regardless of the seriousness of the journalist, he knows he has no latitude to deviate from the guideline that its editor-in-chief has given.

    But can we still speak of journalism in the best sense of the word, especially regarding ethics, knowing that each of these articles or stories will result in more children being sent to schools where they will be subiect to an insidious form of Anthroposophical indoctrination in this obscurantist New Age religion?

    • Helen

      Very interesting, thanks. I particularly like the explanation of why we shouldn’t store data on cds and hard drives;

      “we have to remember that … the cosmic intelligence overseen by Michael descended from the sun to the earth in order to become human intelligence there…”

      • Steve

        that’s right. Every comment we make online merely reinforces the power of Ahriman. My favourite was the number of the beast within the World Wide Web.

        I wonder how they square that with putting all of Steiner’s works online (well, all the works that aren’t too problematic, that is)

    • Jim

      I really liked the bit about the terrible race of ahrimanic spiders intermeshing with each other. As I read it I got a sudden sense of recognition – he was talking about anthroposophy itself. All those interconnected organisations spreading and infiltrating communities.

  2. Jim

    Today’s Observer carries yet another uncritical puff piece on biodynamics concluding that “ethically biodynamics is an easy win”! Clearly the author, Lucy Siegle, hasn’t read beyond the home page of some Steiner website.
    The piece repeats the usual stuff about planting by the moon, the cow horns and preparations. Steiner is referred to as a scientist and philosopher, something real scientists and philosophers might question. The nearest you get to scepticism is the acknowledgement that some might find the ideas strange ( really? ) but that you can taste the difference in the produce. Again, really? I have in the past eaten BD food and drunk the wine and it’s just food and wine. Like organic its sometimes better, sometimes worse and the difference is down to the variety and the care of the producer. Nothing to do with being organic and still less to do with the magic rites performed over the fields.
    And as for ethical, well the food won’t harm you but the cult it supports might.

    • Helen

      Good morning Jim!
      I think I posted about Sarah Raven just as you commented. It’s much the same. Journalists just can’t be bothered to do the research properly.

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