ERIC Number: ED241433
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1983-Nov-25
Reference Count: 0
Burns, John W.
The ideas in Mortimer Adler's educational manifesto, "The Paideia Proposal," are compared to the Greek concept of paideia (meaning upbringing of a child) and discredited. Committed to universal education, Adler wants schooling based on a set of uniformly applied objectives achieved by packaging pre-organized knowledge in established areas of study. Adler would have been comfortable in ancient Greece, for they too had their world under control. Both the Athenian and the Spartan concepts of paideia were the same: all students were subjected to the same objectives; the curriculum was universal and administered with equal treatment of all. There was no individual choice. For example, in Athens the ideas of the sophists who challenged traditional educational practices were received merely as ideas. Although they might enrich social exchanges in the agora, ideas were hardly the stuff from which social reform might flow. Adler's proposal parallels the Athenian treatment of the sophists, i.e., it removes the social dimension from study. The educational process in his manifesto is one of cultural replication, but it does not promote growth. (RM)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Mortimer Adler; Paideia Proposal
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the National Council for the Social Studies (San Francisco, CA, November 25, 1983).