| Teachers College • Columbia University|
Discussion Reading for November 9th
- Amartya Sen. Development as Freedom (New York: Anchor Books, 2000), Chapters 3 & 4. In case some folks don't have Development as Freedom, here are chapters 3&4.
Questions from last week's discussion:
- Is the individual or society the unit of justice in the court decision?
- Do Sen and DeGrasse diverge or move in the same direction in terms of justice?
- Where is the payoff of education and what structure of research makes the most sense to measure the payoff?
- UN Human Development Reports. 2006, 1990-2005, etc.
- UNICEF State of the World's Children. 1996-2006
- World Bank, World Development Reports. 1995-2007
Maggie and I were talking after class, and I wanted to post something quick so as not to forget anything on the train.
- Might one necessary function for educational/developmental achievement be socializing with peers (and what research/theory could support this assertion - is there some theoretical threshhold past which social contact becomes redundant)? If so, to what extent could home schooling be viewed as an unfreedom perpetuated on a child by a parent?
- From our discussion of the ways in which children's intentional behavior demonstrates that they are free and in control of their lives, I want to ask whether the denial of opportunities to work (either by child labor laws or compulsory schooling) an educational unfreedom? If a child has expressed the desire to make furniture, does anyone think that an apprenticeship in a furniture studio could be more educative than schooling? If child labor laws were written to prevent the forced labor of children for their family, to what extent is forced schooling an equally authoritarian constraint on a child's life that is simply motivated by different values? I'm not trying to argue for the repeal of child labor laws, but trying to get at what the catergoies are for the "development" of the educational system. Is compulsory education an unfreedom? (I'd like to look into the historical development of compulsory ed to ground this question. I think the general story is that compulsory requirements emerged with the desire to socialize/"Americanize" urban immmigrant youth. I'm sure that's a glib generalization, but to whatever extent it is true, it reveals how compulsory requirements were intended to restrict the freedom of children to control thier lives.)