ERIC Number: ED305737
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1988-Apr
Reference Count: N/A
Curriculum as Structured Inequality.
This paper addresses the social context of curriculum construction and development to show the relationship between school curricula and patterns of social organization control. The first section traces the history of the concept of curriculum based on sequence, prescription, and differentiation and links this concept to the prevailing ideology of Calvinism and the social requirements of the industrial revolution and the rise of capitalism. By the 20th century, the batch production rhetoric of the "classroom system" (lessons, subjects, timetables, grading, standardization, and streaming) had become so pervasive that it successfully achieved a normative status, creating standards against which all subsequent educational innovations came to be judged. This dominant epistemology was based on the trilogy of pedagogy, curriculum, and evaluation, creating a hierarchy of status and resources for academic subjects, academic examinations, and able students, with university knowledge and university scholars at the apex. The second section is a critique of this dominant epistemology and institutionalized system of state schooling, comparing it with antecedents and suggesting egalitarian alternatives based on the centrality of dialogue and flexibility in the learning process. (TE)
Descriptors: Curriculum, Educational History, Educational Philosophy, Elementary Secondary Education, Epistemology, Equal Education, Foundations of Education, Hidden Curriculum, Humanistic Education, Ideology, Industrialization, Marxian Analysis, Puritans, Social Control, Social Values, Socioeconomic Influences
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association (New Orleans, LA, April 5-9, 1988).