NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
Peer reviewed Peer reviewed
Direct linkDirect link
ERIC Number: EJ881608
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010-Feb
Pages: 12
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 0
ISSN: ISSN-0030-9230
Concentration and Civilisation: Producing the Attentive Child in the Age of Enlightenment
Sobe, Noah W.
Paedagogica Historica: International Journal of the History of Education, v46 n1-2 p149-160 Feb 2010
The problem of how best to capture, direct, and enhance children's abilities to pay attention has been a central feature of educational thought and practices over a long duration. And, while having students pay attention in class has been a concern of teachers across the ages, beginning in the Enlightenment we find a significant shift in educational literature and practice where the child's attention appears less and less as a simple passing reference and is no longer merely seen as an aid to instruction but becomes central to numerous educational projects. This article examines the educational writings of John Locke (1632-1704), Jean-Jacques Rousseau (1712-1778), and Maria Edgeworth (1767-1849) as a tactic for illuminating the categories that were embedded in theory and practice around the child's attention in the "long" eighteenth century. These three popular advice-giving writers allow us to track changes and continuities in pedagogic conceptualisations of children's attentiveness. The article's examination of pedagogic theory shows us how consequential educational inequalities can be produced at an epistemic level, in the educational knowledge that identifies children and their potentialities as learners. (Contains 41 footnotes.)
Routledge. Available from: Taylor & Francis, Ltd. 325 Chestnut Street Suite 800, Philadelphia, PA 19106. Tel: 800-354-1420; Fax: 215-625-2940; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A