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What’s Wrong in Modern Education? Maritain’s Warning is Valid Today More than Ever
Rajský Andrej
The neo-Thomist philosopher Jacques Maritain, in his pedagogical work Education at the Crossroads (1943), which contains four lectures delivered at Yale University, organically presents his dual vision on which his educational-philosophical considerations are based: awareness of values that make the person one universe and ‘the absolute’, which is connected with the sense of historical forms and needs. Transhistorical ideals need to be transferred to time structures. Education at the Crossroads deals with pedagogical questions in relation to the nature and aim of the human person, especially in the function of requirements typical for modern civilisation and education. Education is primarily a service of help to human nature that acquires its own developed form in man. Education is an extraordinarily demanding art which, by its very nature, belongs to the sphere of morality and practical wisdom. Maritain identifies seven major misconceptions in the effort to reflect education theoretically, which is, however, directly transferred to defective educational practice: 1. a confusion of ends with means, 2. a false image of the end of education, 3. the focus of education on practice, 4. sociologism, 5. intellectualism, 6. voluntarism, and 7. a belief in the omnipotence of education. The submitted paper presents and analyses Maritain’s warnings for education, valid perhaps even more today than at the time they were written.

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