The Sociology of the Educational System - a Reappraisal

Monday, 11 July 2016: 09:00-10:30
Location: Hörsaal 47 (Main Building)
RC04 Sociology of Education (host committee)

Language: English and Spanish

Since the 1970s, there have appeared a number of ambitious studies on educational systems and/in modern society – characterized by a distinctive combination of sociological theory and historical analysis. Prominent examples include Talcott Parsons’ The American University (1973), Margaret Archer’s Social Origins of Educational Systems (1979/1984), Neil Smelser’s Social Paralysis and Social Change (1991), Niklas Luhmann’s Reflexionsprobleme im Erziehungssystem (1979/1988) and Das Erziehungssystem der Gesellschaft (2002), and neo-institutionalist writings, such as David Baker’s The Schooled Society (2014).
For this session, we invite papers that critically discuss the theoretical and historical analyses presented in these sociological studies of the educational system. We look, more particularly, for contributions that share the objective of these studies, but critically address some of the theoretical and historical issues currently at stake. How can we understand and conceptualize the historically changing relationship between education and society – in particular between education, the nation-state and global society? How can we assess the potential of different theoretical approaches to inform historical and empirical analyses of this changing relationship? How can we move forward with such macro-sociological contributions to the sociology of education? The session organizers are particularly interested in papers that compare the strengths and weaknesses of different theoretical approaches of the educational system and/in modern society.
Session Organizers:
Kari KANTASALMI, University of Helsinki, Faculty of Educational Science, Finland and Raf VANDERSTRAETEN, Ghent University, Belgium
Conceptualising Schooling and Education in Modern Society: A Theoretical Approach
Achala GUPTA, National University of Singapore, Singapore