Mark Smith: Creators not consumers. Rediscovering social education

Creators not Consumers - cover of second edition

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Written by Mark Smith, Creators not Consumers first appeared in 1980. We reproduce the complete text

Two main themes run through Creators not Consumers. First, there is a concern to encourage young people to get involved in organizing things for themselves. This flows from a belief in the benefits of associational life both for the happiness and self confidence of individuals, and for the strengthening of community life. Second, there is an invitation to workers to embrace and explore their educational role. These two themes help to explain the sub-title – rediscovering social education.

Clearly things have changed in English youth work since this booklet was written. The space for open, associational work of this kind has been severely limited – at least within state-sponsored settings; and the values of the market and individual consumption have become even more dominant.

Here we reproduce the second edition from 1982. Originally published by NAYC Publications (now Youth Clubs UK). First published August 1980. Reprinted October 1980. Second Edition January 1982.


Chapter 1: The ice-skating trip
Chapter 2: What the workers did
Chapter 3: Rediscovering social education
Chapter 4: Social education and politics
Afterword – Towards a critical social education?
Further reading

© Mark K. Smith 1980, 1982