Reading Ranciere on Jacotot (Ignorant Schoolmaster) I have been thinking about the idea of constraint, of force, or the subordination of one will to another without sacrificing the equality of intelligences. ("Entre l'eleve et le maitre s'etait etabli un pur rapport de volonte a volunte..."p25) The student's will is subjected to that of the teacher, but the intelligences of the teacher and student are separate and equal.
This is one reason I like using learning games -- in the game, the players are subject to arbitrary constraints, rules that create an environment and a dynamic that the players can then fill with their own content, creating a narrative that they shape through their interaction. People voluntarily (though with varying levels of enthusiasm, it is interesting to note) subject themselves to the rules and accept the goal of the activity and, by doing so, join together in a free process of dialogue and creation. The rules make visible, tangible, the subordination of the will of the participant to the will of the teacher (whoever has chosen the game) and, if the teacher plays too, provide a basis for equal participation, again separating the question of will from intelligence.
The question of force is worth exploring. Is there a democratic version of Ranciere/Jactotot's "pur rapport" in which the teacher (a role played by a person) is ultimately subjected to the will of the students (a role played by people), or, rather, teacher and students are bound by same democratic constraints?