ERIC Number: EJ943354
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2011-May
The Proper Place of Theory in Educational History?
Urban, Wayne J.
History of Education Quarterly, v51 n2 p229-238 May 2011
In this article, the author talks about the proper place of theory in educational history and shares his comments on the essays by Eileen Tamura, Carolyn Eick, and Roland Coloma. Eileen Tamura's positing of most educational historians as practitioners of narrative history is surely on the mark. She invites historians of education to investigate nonnarrative approaches, an invitation justified, in her mind, because she has learned from those approaches. The author wishes that Tamura had made what she learned more explicit by showing her readers particular ways in which it influenced her own historical work. Instead, Tamura chooses to describe four different nonnarrative approaches to history, and singles out two of them to discuss at some length. In terms of the history of American education, the author argues that quantitative social history contributed greatly to its development. The author thinks that the contribution of quantitative social historians to the history of education should be acknowledged, perhaps even celebrated. Tamura does not discuss the third and fourth nonnarrative approaches, the work done by Derrida and Foucault identifying narrative as only one of several discourses appropriate for scholarship, and the hermeneutically oriented scholarship of Gadamer and Ricouer. (Contains 14 footnotes.)
Descriptors: Social History, Educational History, Historians, Educational Theories, Theories, Historiography, Investigations, Educational Practices, Research Methodology, Narration, Social Science Research
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Opinion Papers
Education Level: Higher Education
Authoring Institution: N/A