Reading Dewey's Democracy and Education for Tuesday's class, I'm finding myself thrilled. It's been a while since I've spent time with Dewey's boldness in challenging all our lazy pieties and providing charged alternatives. There are no small ideas here!
From a social standpoint, dependence denotes a power rather than a weakness; it involves interdependence. There is always a danger that increased personal independence will decrease the social capacity of an individual. In making him more self-reliant, it may make him more self-sufficient; it may lead to aloofness and indifference. It often makes an individual so insensitive to his relations to others as to develop an illusion of being really able to stand and act alone — an unnamed form of insanity which is responsible for a large part of the remediable suffering of the world.
John Dewey, Democracy and Education: An Introduction
to the Philosophy of Education (New York: Macmillan, 1916), 52