Public instruction
A new pedagogy for a new politics
in In pursuit of politics
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New ways of thinking about education and its contribution to politics gave rise to the idea of 'public instruction,' a pedagogical ideal. Festivals, prizes, competitions, and songs allowed students to demonstrate command of specific skills, familiarity with the documents, principles, and principal events of revolutionary history and politics, and membership in a larger community of France. Integrating these into a coherent pedagogy that included new curricular emphases and new institutional routines was critically important to how revolutionaries thought education might help to realize a new political order. Honoré de Mirabeau offered some general principles for educational reform, focusing primarily on questions of political oversight, the need for curricular and institutional changes, and the beneficial effects of competition. While he did not provide the details of a future system of education, these principles offer us a sense of how Mirabeau thought about the new pedagogy and the new politics.

In pursuit of politics

Education and revolution in eighteenth-century France


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