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The Art of Instruction

Essays on Pedagogy and Literature in 17th-Century France

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Edited by Anne L. Birberick

The Art of Instruction: Essays on Pedagogy and Literature in 17th-Century France aims to add a new dimension to the scholarly discussion on how culture is inculcated by focusing on the interplay between aesthetic forms and pedagogical agendas. The nine essays in the collection take into account the full range of meanings associated with the term art: science, method, learning, beautiful expression, artistic creation. In exploring the role art plays in shaping an instructional system, the volume’s contributors examine literary genres that are both established (comedies, tragedies, sonnets) and nascent (novels, manuals, gazettes) as well as the works of a diverse group of seventeenth-century writers: Chassignet, Subligny, Scarron, Lafayette, La Bruyère, Maintenon, de Visé, Boursault, Molière and Racine. What emerges from this diversity is an invaluable exploration of how educational imperatives, no matter their focus, rely as much on manipulating artistic forms as they do on articulating didactic principles. Broad in its scope while remaining thematically coherent, The Art of Instruction will be of interest to students and scholars of early modern French literature, history, culture and pedagogy.

Closed Education in the Open Society

Kibbutz Education as a Case Study

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Chen Yehezkely

Why is education in the open society not open? Why is this option not even considered in the debate over which education is most suited for the open society? Many consider such an option irresponsible. What, then, are the minimal responsibilities of education?
The present volume raises these questions and many more. It is a book we have been waiting for. It offers a rare combination of two seemingly opposite, unyielding attitudes: critical and friendly. Dr. Yehezkely applies a rigorous fallibilist-critical approach to issues regarding contemporary education. His diagnosis is that the source of our trouble is the closed undemocratic character of education, which causes education to become, in effect, a fifth column in the open democratic society. Following Popper, he concedes that democracy is every bit as flawed and as problematic as its enemies accuse it of being, particularly in education; still it is our only hope, since open responsible debate of vital problems cannot do without it. Democracy is risky: yet its absence guarantees failure, especially in closed undemocratic education, even when inspired by the most progressive ideas extant, charged with tremendous good will, and executed with selfless love and devotion. Kibbutz education is a case in point.

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Mualla Selçuk

Within the pluralistic character of society and the modern school, students are seeking a different kind of understanding about the relationship between their religious traditions and life. This affects Islamic religious education in many aspects, including its aims, its programs, and approach to teaching in the classroom. Recently, religious education has not been an activity of faith transfer but a matter of passing on new perspectives into the context in which the individual stands. Therefore, the teachers should strive to teach their students to live with the demands of plurality and modernity present in their world today. This paper will advance some insights on the methodological problem of communicating the Qur’anic text by introducing a communicative model of teaching in teacher training. The communicative model of teaching is a kind of reflection on the text of the Qur’an within the subject in its historical and contemporary contexts. It starts from the question: What is textual and what is contextual? This paper aims to present a communicative model of teaching, taking the Qur’anic concept of “people of the book” as an example.

Phenomenology and Education

Cosmology, Co-Being, and Core Curriculum

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Michael M. Kazanjian

Phenomenologists or Continental thinkers argue for the subject-object continuum. For phenomenology, subjectivity is of the object, and object is for the subject. This book applies that continuum to the holistic foundations of work or specialization. The author devotes a chapter to each of eight cultural applications of the subject-object continuum. Chapter One examines the specialist-generalist continuum meaning specialization for general education. That continuum comprises the framework for the remaining seven chapters. Those seven include production for community, design for user, automation for user, computing for society, taxation for society, information for manufacturing, and procedure for goal. These eight applications constitute the basis for a core curriculum. The core curriculum gives holistic meaning, order, or cosmos to all jobs and to all people. Cosmos is a Greek word meaning humanistic-scientific order, irreducible to physics. The core curriculum is fundamental cosmology. Each of the eight continuities follow in a logical, systematic manner from the analytic-subjective continuum meaning object for subjectivity. Phenomenology of education can become the human basis of a promising holistic logic, bringing together analytic and existential themes.

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Rima Nasrallah

This paper traces the development of Christian education in Lebanon and its various influences on society. Christian education is closely related to socio-political circumstances in this country and is both a reflection of its many phases and a reaction to it. Due to the Ottoman Empire’s millet system, religious education started with and continued as the responsibility of the separate religious communities. Since the late eighteenth century, Western Jesuit and later Anglo-American Protestant missions added more layers and complexities to Christian education. Despite all their merits and the richness they brought, the various missions unknowingly loaded the subject of Christian education with spiritual, cultural, and political stress. In turn, the political developments of the twentieth century culminating in the long civil war, splintered the religious communities and affected their way of teaching religion. Post-war Lebanon still carries within it the legacies of the Ottoman Empire, the fingerprint of Western missionaries, the prejudices of Arab nationalism, and the bitter memories of a war tainted with religious differences.

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Edited by Eva Alcón Soler and Maria-Pilar Safont-Jordà

Studies on discourse and language learning originated in the field of general education and they focused on first language learning environments. However, since 1980s research on discourse and language learning broadened the scope of investigation to respond to second and foreign language environments. Recently, the emergence of new language learning contexts such as computer mediated communication, multilingual settings or content and language integrated contexts requires further research that focuses on discourse and language learning. From this perspective, the present volume aims to broaden the scope of investigation in foreign language contexts by exploring discourse patterns in the classroom and examining the impact of factors such as gender, explicitness of feedback or L1 use on language learning through discourse. With that aim in mind, this volume will bring together research that investigates discourse in various instructional settings, namely those of primary, secondary and university L2 learning environments, content and language integrated contexts and other new language learning settings. The number and variety of languages involved both as the first language (e.g. English, Finnish, Basque, Spanish, Japanese, French, Italian, Catalan) as well as the target foreign language (e.g. English, French, Italian, Japanese, Spanish) makes the volume specially attractive. Additionally, the different approaches adopted by the researchers participating in this volume, such as information processing, sociocultural theory, or conversation analysis, widen the realm of investigation on discourse and language learning. Finally, the strength of the volume also lies in the range of educational settings (primary, secondary and tertiary education) and the worldwide representation of contributors across seven different countries, namely those of Spain, France, Austria, Finland, Germany, Canada, Australia and the United States. The uniqueness of the volume is due to its eclectic and comprehensive nature in tackling instructional discourse. Worldwide outstanding researchers, like Julianne House, Carme Muñoz, Ute Smit, Tarja Nikula or Roy Lyster, to quote but a few, adopt different perspectives in this joint contribution that will certainly broaden the scope of research on language learners’ discourse.