But Fourier is against the family on educational grounds as well. Rousseau had advocated in his Emile that "the child's natural teachers are his parents, and there is no real education outside the family". 6 This, says Fourier, can only lead to irreparable harm. The father will desire to bring up his child in his own mould and yet the talents and abilities ofhis son may be totally different. 7 The father will attempt to instil his own ideals of success into his child and these will usually be unsuitable for the aptitudes and temperament of the offspring. Moreover, asserts Fourier, family education puts the father in a false position for he is not his son's natural disciplinarian. 8
The home, asserts Fourier, is unsuitable on a further count: the resources available to parents are limited; this restricts the provision of educational material. Moreover, when brought up within the family circle, the growing child is subject to the conflict and distrust between the parents, the school, his peers and the servants.U At school, says Fourier, he may be taught to 'spurn perfidious riches' or to admire the virtues of the young republicans of Sparta and 'similar nonsense'. It is true, continues Fourier, that among all this there are some excellent precepts, but the child in the family milieu absorbs only the most dangerous anti-social tenets and spurns the little good there is. The family influence is too strong for it to be otherwise. The father, acting always in secret, will early impress upon his child the need to outwit others, by means foul or fair, where monetary considerations are involved. The child will thus early appreciate that money made at the expense of someone else is a true sign of ability and of success. True, he adds, possibly one eighth or more likely one sixteenth of parents are exempt from this radical vice in family education, but they are exceptions.