Jean-Jacques Rousseau’s Theory of Education:
November 10, 2014
Introduction to Philosophy
Jean-Jacques Rousseau was a revolutionary French philosopher who in addition held his position in society as an eloquent writer of the Enlightenment Age. Much of Rousseau’s thoughts and theories illuminated through his writings, and his works reflected his disdain for contemporary society in which he assured to undermine the freedom of men. At a young age, Rousseau attended a school in the rural village of Bossey where he acquired the love for nature. However, Rousseau ended his period of formal education when the school punished him for a boyish offense. It was in Bossey, Rousseau claimed to have evolved his theory that emphasized on the significance of sensibility to nature as the course to achieve freedom. Rousseau believed that discipline, restraint of impulses,and departure from nature caused humanity to be corrupted by civilization (Monteiro). According to Rousseau, eighteenth-century conventional education was hierarchical and authoritative, and it functioned to disrupt the connection between human and nature. Educators dictated learning and suppressed students’ freedom of expression and will with regulations and disciplines; this systematic practice educated the nature out of children and violated their natural self preservation. Children became insensible to their natural selves because their learning and development were structured by the standpoints of adults. Society cultivated education to civilize and socialize children into “good citizens” with predictable and acceptable forms of behavior that fit the societal standards of orderly conduct and manner (Peckover). Nonetheless, children’s decisions and judgements became dependent upon the judgements of others because the education system hindered free thinking individuals which...
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