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ERIC Number: EJ767520
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2006
Pages: 29
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 56
ISSN: ISSN-1056-4934
The Development Turn in Comparative Education
Steiner-Khamsi, Gita
European Education, v38 n3 p19-47 Fall 2006
The 1950s and 1960s were formative years for comparative education societies in different parts of the world, including the United States and Soviet Union. In need of finding a noncapitalist source of inspiration, socialist authors resorted to N. K. Krupskaia (Lenin's wife) as a discursive founder of Marxist-Leninist comparative education. Until the late 1950s, Marxist-Leninist comparative education placed the emphasis exclusively on education in capitalist and socialist countries. For comparative education researchers in the United States, Soviet education was first an object of admiration, and in the following two decades a counterreference for all that U.S. education was not supposed to be or never wished to become. Soviet accounts of U.S. education were extremely critical in the 1950s, and became somewhat more positive in the mid-1980s. In the mid-1980s the Soviet negative perceptions on U.S. education finally gave way to a genuine interest in understanding education in capitalist countries, including in the United States. In this article, the author compares the world-systems of U.S. comparative education with the geopolitical distinctions made by Marxist-Leninist comparative education in the German Democratic Republic (GDR). The analysis covers the cold war period from 1956 to 1983. The author argues in her broader research on the history of the comparative method that the influence of the cold war is evident in several contemporary features of U.S. and German comparative and international education. Prominent among these is the dominance of development and area studies in U.S. comparative and international education, as well as the absence of development studies in contemporary German comparative education. Finally, the author observes a varied interest in studying various educational systems that are perceived as similar or comparable to a country's own. This article focuses exclusively on the emergence of development and area studies in U.S. and GDR comparative education during the cold war period. (Contains 15 notes.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: East Germany; United States