"Turkish Modernization," Democracy, and Education: An Analysis from Dewey's Perspective

By Özsoy, Seçkin | Kuram ve Uygulamada Egitim Bilimleri, Autumn 2009 | Go to article overview

"Turkish Modernization," Democracy, and Education: An Analysis from Dewey's Perspective


Özsoy, Seçkin, Kuram ve Uygulamada Egitim Bilimleri


Abstract

Dewey is an important representative of the libertarian education movement, which has its roots based on the values of the enlightenment. Th is study aimed to analyze the relationship between "Turkish modernization" and education from Dewey's perspective. In the paper, the place and eff ect of Dewey in the Turkish pedagogical vision was analyzed within a wider historical context such as the "modernization problematic." Th e characteristic of the "Turkish modernization," which, at the same time, comes out as a tendency to become an education project, constituted the reason for this approach to the issue. Th is analysis relating to the "Turkish modernization" from the perspective of Dewey, who is a democracy philosopher, was inevitably regarding how much room this project gives to libertarian and democratic values in education. In the study, it was concluded that there was an irreconcilable confl ict between the values that "Turkish modernization" is based on which also constitutes the reference framework of the education system and the libertarian and democratic values Dewey advocates.

Key Words

Turkish Modernization, Democracy, Education, John Dewey.

Th is study can be described as a reading on Dewey and the relationship between the "Turkish modernization" and education from his perspective. Th e fundamental aim of the study was to evaluate the infl uence of Dewey on Turkish pedagogical thinking within a wider historical context such as the "modernization problematic."

Dewey in Turkey: An Intellectual Conundrum

In Turkey, Dewey is a thinker who was discovered by a very small intellectual circle, relatively late, often misunderstood and misintroduced (Wolf-Gazo, 1996). In Turkey, Dewey is seen only as an education philosopher, his works in other fi elds have not received enough attention and almost ignored. It is striking that educationists in Turkey, whilst evaluating Dewey within the context of the confl icts between reconstructivist, progressive, or pragmatist approaches or whilst taking his criticisms aimed at traditional education into consideration, have not felt the need to associate these thoughts of his with the other dimensions of his philosophy and to link these to the issue of democracy. Th e lack of a holistic approach in intellectuals in Turkey relating to Dewey has also led to inadequacies in interpreting his report (Dewey, 1939) relating to the Turkish national education (Ata, 2001; Bal, 1974; Bender, 2005; Brickman, 1984; Wilson & Basgöz, 1968).

Dewey visited Turkey approximately a year after the declaration of the Republic (in 1924), during a twilight period when the "old" had disappeared but the "new" had not yet materialized. It is seen that as a result of his observations in Turkey, he approached the reformation eff orts made in the fi eld of education positively, was impressed by the ideal of the Republic, the infrastructure of which was being founded in Ankara under conditions of deprivation and that he viewed this ideal sympathetically (Akyüz, 1999). Dewey's short (2 months) visit to Turkey is completely a conundrum (Ata, 2001). Th ere is no clear and certain information in the literature regarding either the start or end dates of this visit, by whom or which institution and for what purpose and with what authority Dewey was invited (Bilgi & Özsoy, 2005).

Dewey has a specifi c place among the foreign experts who have come to Turkey (Akkutay, 1996; Ergun, 1982). Th e founding leaders of the Republic who wanted to achieve a lot in a little time were infl uenced by Dewey's pragmatist philosophy to a great extent (Bal, 1989, 1991; Büyükdüvenci, 1995; Ergun, 1987; Kirby, 2000). Dewey's holistic approach to educational issues renders him unique among the foreign experts who have come to Turkey.

"Turkish Modernization" and Education

Th e most distinctive characteristic of Turkish modernization which distinguishes it from its western examples is that it is a state-centered project (Aktar, 1993; Ercan, 1996; insel, 1996, 2002; Mardin, 2000; Saribay, 1982; Tarih Vakfi, 1998, 1999a). …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

"Turkish Modernization," Democracy, and Education: An Analysis from Dewey's Perspective
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.