Civics Citizenship

Civic Republicanism and Civic Education: The Education of by A. Peterson

By A. Peterson

This publication significantly explores civic republicanism in mild of up to date republican political idea and the impression of republican types of citizenship in fresh advancements in civic schooling throughout a few Western international locations.

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Aristotle’s commitment to the political ends of man can therefore only be understood in relation to his commitment to virtue (arête) and to practical or moral wisdom (phronesis). Duncan (1995: 147–8) summarizes this relationship in the following way: The object of virtuous civic participation for Aristotle ... is not to reinvigorate or enshrine the state ... but to help individuals fulfil themselves on a multidimensional (and therefore truly human) rather than a unidimensional scale. In other words, it is in the interest of the self, given its social context and ‘public’ dimension, to participate politically in a virtuous manner.

Second, when Aristotle discusses deliberation within his Nichomachean Ethics he is generally referring to an internal process of reasoning within the citizen, claiming that ‘... he who deliberates inquires and calculates’ and that ‘excellence in deliberation involves reasoning’ (VI, 9. 1142a27). Rather than separating thought 38 Civic Republicanism and Civic Education from actions, practical reasoning conjoins them through phronesis. Phronesis, or practical reasoning, is an individual capacity and involves citizens in rationally considering the actions that they take in any given circumstance.

Owing to the decentralized nature of educational responsibility in the USA, national policies for civic standards ‘remain at the level of recommendations for schools and school systems rather than mandates’ (Hughes, Print and Sears, 2009). In other nations, of which Canada is perhaps a good example, the commitment to civic education is more complex and harder to describe, especially because developments in civic education have not been as pronounced as in other nations. Whilst a case has been made by committed supporters for a renewed form of civic education centred on education for citizenship, there is some disparity between the desires of these commentators and the actual policy and curricular provision across provinces.

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