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ERIC Number: EJ748470
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2004-Oct
Pages: 26
Abstractor: Author
Reference Count: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-0030-9230
Backing the Actor as Agent in Discipline Formation: An Example of the "Secondary Disciplinarization" of the Educational Sciences, Based on the Networks of Ovide Decroly (1901-1931)
Van Gorp, Angelo; Depaepe, Marc; Simon, Frank
Paedagogica Historica: International Journal of the History of Education, v40 n5-6 p591-616 Oct 2004
The works of the Belgian neurologist and educationist Ovide Decroly (1871-1932) extended over the medical and pedagogical fields as well as both the practical-professional and the theoretical-disciplinary fields. For this reason, Decroly seemed to be a suitable starting point for a contribution to the problem outlined by Hofstetter and Schneuwly of "the birth and development of a disciplinary field in education", all the more so because they proposed that the topic be broached from "the role of institutes and congresses." Putting Decroly in the centre of our perspective offers a double advantage. The making of science, thus also the discipline-formation process, is an inherently communicative and social event and is bound to the individual or "the actor as an agent of change." In addition, a case study of Decroly gives the opportunity to test against a multitude of different congresses the concrete problem of the birth and development of a disciplinary field in education. In the limited scope of an article, however, it is not possible to analyse all these congresses in detail. In spite of his apparently very wide-ranging congress itinerary, two constants struck us: first, it turned out that Decroly in his presentations limited himself to only a handful of closely related subjects, and, second, two associations predominated throughout Decroly's entire congress itinerary: the Societe protectrice de l'enfance anormale (SPEA) and the Societe belge de Pedotechnie (SBP). The SPEA and the SBP seemed to form a bridge between the academic-institutional level and the communicative level of the congresses. The two associations, which can be considered networks that operated at the intersection of the theoretical-disciplinary and the practical-professional fields, thus provided a promising way for the authors to operationalize their objective--the study of congresses and institutes starting from Decroly. This article will proceed in three stages. First, the SPEA and the BP will be introduced and the relationship Decroly had with these associations will be examined. Then, the extent to which the SPEA and the SBP determined Decroly's congress itinerary will be examined, and on the basis of Decroly's relationship with these associations, it will be shown how they contributed to the institutionalization of the educational sciences in Belgium. Finally it is wondered whether, by shifting the focus from congresses and institutes to networks, one does have a concretization of what Hofstetter and Schneuwly, refering to Stichweh, call the "(predominantly) secondary disciplinarization" of the educational sciences?
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Belgium