“Inventing the future” website

A courageous Italian social reformer reflects on the universality of lessons taught by his own efforts to bring change to a violent and stagnant society.

By Danilo Dolci

Until the age of fifteen, I made no particular effort to learn anything. I lived in a middle-class family and went to school year after year, paying rather more attention to the subjects taught by teacher I liked and less to the rest. I adored music, enjoyed reading, and was delighted when it began to snow and equally delighted when the weather turned warm and I could go swimming. Continue reading

Jamnalal Bajaj

Often called “the Gandhi of Sicily”, 65 – years old Mr. Dolci is one of the most renowned social activists in the world. With a promising future in architecture ahead of him in Northern Italy, he chose to get involved, in his own words, in “work more essential than urban planning or builing design for the rich”, and proceeded to Trappeto, in Werstern Sicily, an extremely poor town of peasants and fishermen. It was also the heart of Mafia activity. Dolci was struck first by Sicily’s poverty and decided to dedicate his life for its eradication. He worked with the peasants and firshermen, and, indeed, lived their situation. Continue reading

Feeding Hungry Minds

Feeding Hungry Minds

I hesitaded before accepting the invitation to write about our latest experiment at the education center at Mirto in Sicily.During the last six years we have held many seminars to look at the various aspects of the experimental work we are now engaged in at the center .But it was only at the beginning of 1975 that we managed to develop our enterprise on a more permanent and organic basic.I want here to show what the major difficulties were,and how we are seeking to overcome them.(In writing about the center I want to make a distinction between the words “to educate”-from the Latin, educere –and “to teach”-from the Old English, taecan,to make a mark or sign). Continue reading