Society and Education explores the relation of society to education in Europe, as well as its comparative perspective towards overseas societies and their institutions. It is an enquiry into the social-historical institution of education and cross-cultural studies in Europe.
Elaborating on the Castoriadian ontology, the book delves into the magma of social imaginary significations that characterise and associate pivotal epochs of the continent’s history, Classical Greece and Modernity, and exemplifies their incarnation in educational systems and in the formation of the European and, in general, the Western comparative gaze. With a particular focus on our epoch, Postmodernity and globalisation, the study traces the pervasive dominance of capitalist significations in social institutions, forms, and activities, as well as in education and the way it is compared across countries. Nevertheless, as Moutsios suggests, the European tradition, notwithstanding its ideological usage by much of social sciences, contains an indissoluble critical and self-reflective dimension, which needs to be sustained and advanced in education and its cross-cultural comparison, perhaps, more than ever before.
The book demonstrates the embeddedness of education in its cultural context and should, therefore, be of great interest to academics, researchers and postgraduate students who are involved with comparative education, the sociology and history of education, education policy, and European studies.
'Stavros Moutsios has produced a highly original and theoretically ambitious book, which promises to extend the boundaries of Comparative Education in important directions, as he links detailed analyses of ancient Greek education, with a significant and highly welcome introduction to the work of Cornelius Castoriadis on social imaginaries, and its potential for Comparative Education scholars.' - Roger Dale, Professor at the University of Bristol.
'Moutsios returns educational theory to the big questions about the purpose of education. He asks us to think again about what makes democracy possible, and what role knowledge, and by extension, education, may play in making the knowledge-democracy connection.'
Elizabeth Rata, Journal of Educational Philosophy and Theory.
Chapter 1. Social imaginary, culture and education as an institution
Chapter 2. Self-reflectiveness, education and cross-cultural inquiry in Ancient Greece
Chapter 3. The institution of education and comparative studies in Europe
Chapter 4. Total capitalism and the (de-)Europeanisation of education and cross-cultural comparison
Chapter 5. From comparison to syncrisis