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School journeys and the paradox of progressive education in Portugal, 1890-1960
Umeå University, Faculty of Arts, Department of historical, philosophical and religious studies.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-0525-3782
2019 (English)In: ISCHE 41 - Spaces and places of education: book of abstracts / [ed] Luís Grosso Correia and Sara Poças, Porto: International Standing Conference for the History of Education ; University of Porto , 2019, p. 411-412Conference paper, Oral presentation with published abstract (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

The histories of education’s ideas and methods that flourished and spread around the world at the turn of the 20th century provide valuable insights into the ideas, institutions and personages of progressive education movements. (1) When connecting schooling and modernity (2) most of these histories, however, focus aspects that ultimately refer to school spaces, thus overlooking that the scope of schooling does not deplete itself within its walls. Indeed, schooling – understood both as institutional and cultural processes – was also carried out beyond those spaces in an attempt to bridge them to the world in terms of knowledge transference and production of subjectivities, that is in an attempt to support the students’ learning and becoming processes. (3) Among the means used to build such bridges was the school journey, an activity meant to take the students out of the school space in order to observe, study and actively experience in situ historical heritages, industrial processes, natural objects and phenomena, societal achievements, all culture at last related to what was to be taught, thought and acted upon. According to Lawn (4), school activities concerning observation study played a decisive role in the development of educational systems since the late nineteenth century and were the key drivers of a culture of classification and understanding that enabled the universalization of ways of seeing. Furthermore, they were imbued with the moral concern of governing the subjects, which was connected to the desire of producing a metamorphosis from student to citizen (5).

By mapping the debate on a way of thinking and making schooling beyond the classroom, through an analysis of the Portuguese educational discourse, dispersed on monographs, journal articles, school principals’ records and schools’ yearbooks, this paper provides an overview of how this active learning method was imagined and undertaken in secondary education Portugal, between 1890 and 1960. The analysis is centred around the concepts of educational paradox (6) to identify convergences and divergences across different levels of discussion (ideas and practice), and of grammar of schooling (7) to discuss how they can be understood over time. I will argue that the discontinuities and the continuities, the desired change towards emancipatory learningunderstanding processes and the persistence of some mechanisms of the criticized unproductive teaching-transmission tradition can be explained by the ‘reason’ of schooling (8) i.e., the ‘logic’ that orders and governs the school subjects, in this case on school’s extramural space. In my understanding, the examination of school journeys allows a new perspective onto the grammar of modern schooling and instigates a critical genealogical incursion into one of its most long-lasting activities.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Porto: International Standing Conference for the History of Education ; University of Porto , 2019. p. 411-412
Series
ISCHE (Online), E-ISSN 2313-1845
Keywords [en]
school journeys, progressive education, reason of schooling
National Category
History Educational Sciences
Research subject
history of education
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-169275OAI: oai:DiVA.org:umu-169275DiVA, id: diva2:1420527
Conference
International Standing Conference for the History of Education (ISCHE) 41 - Spaces and Places of Education, July 16-20, 2019, Porto, Portugal
Available from: 2020-03-31 Created: 2020-03-31 Last updated: 2020-11-20Bibliographically approved

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CiteExportLink to record
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