Ravitching: Loving Myself as an Immortal

Longtime Fordham
friend and acclaimed education historian Diane Ravitch, author of last year’s
Death and Life of the Great American School System, has agreed to showcase here a brief excerpt from her next best
Ravitching: Loving Myself as an Immortal, to be published by the L.
Ron Hubbard Press in September.

In the fall of 2010, I decided to
completely revamp my home-entertainment system. Best Buy was refusing to
special order VHS tapes for me anymore, and I was starting to understand
the benefits of surround sound and a speaker set
. As part of that
transition, I went through all of my old videos, boxing them up for storage and
making room for the newer DVDs (of course, I couldn’t just get
rid of them
!). When I came across my old favorite, Risky Business, I had to pop it in
the player and relive the joys. Watching the familiar plot unfold, however, I
was struck by how unactualized
Tom Cruise
was in that movie. As I watched him slide across the screen, I
wondered what had changed so much for Cruise in the past thirty years. What was
the turning point
in his life? And, more importantly, how could I have a similar conversion

Then I got it: Scientology.
That was—that is—the missing piece in my life, the truth I needed to see the
world more broadly and understand the issues in our education system more
deeply. In this book, I describe my path to discovering Scientology and making
it part of me and me of it. And although I was not able to produce a silver
bullet in The Death and Life of the Great American
School System
, I am confident that now, dear reader, I can offer you
education-reform salvation.

Diane Ravitch, Ravitching: Loving Myself as an Immortal
(Galactic Confederacy: L. Ron Hubbard Press, 2011).