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Expanding Democratic Citizenship Education through Bildung: KlafkiConfronting 21st  Century

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The problem that I am addressing is the lack of social cohesion in contemporary democratic countries, in particular the lack of interest of citizenship education. I dismiss political liberalism in the narrow Rawlsian sense and employ social-democratic republicanism, asserting with Durkheim that only by being considered a valuable comprehensive doctrine, i.e. a comprehensive civic religion, can deliberative democracy also become an individual civic obligation and vice versa. In continuation, the idea is that democratic citizenship education may benefit from introducing into the discussion the German idea of Bildung. Klafki argues for recognizing both the classical heritage of Bildung and the need for ideology critique, thus substantializing the argument for coping with contemporary problems through democratic education. Klafki’s didactics is clearly political, relating explicitly to questions of justice, also in the classroom. It does, however, also aims to be a theory of learning, teaching and schooling as such. This way of arguing emphasizes the importance of cultural Bildung rather than political democracy for citizenship education, thus appreciating non-political and apolitical aspects of human life, recognizing in addition human rights and anarchism as legitimate concerns. This emphasis, however, also has an important implication for republican social democracy, namely valuing a truly liberal approach to education, i.e. one that stimulates the mutual recognition of the individual other in her or his substantial cultural otherness.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationUna acción educativa pensada : Reflexiones desde la filosofía de la educación
EditorsC. Naval, A. Bernal, J.L. Fuentes, A.R. Cárdenas, G. Jover
Number of pages11
Place of publicationMadrid
PublisherDykinson, S.L.
Publication year2020
Article number102
ISBN (Electronic)978-84-1377-141-0
Publication statusPublished - 2020

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