Curriculum Studies in Mexico: Intellectual Histories, by William F. Pinar (eds.)

By William F. Pinar (eds.)

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Despite its defamation by popular usage, the notion of “heroic” conveys courage in confronting the actuality of History. Such actuality (always “conflictual”) includes the alterity of lived experience itself, made vivid (even lacerating) by imprinting events, among them the crushing of the 1968 student movement. ” 9. Here decadence means defeat, not self-indulgent resistance to dominant cultural (in the West derivatively Christian) scripts of self-deprivation. In his Vie Nuove “dialogue” of July 9, 1960 regarding Pasternak, Pier Paolo Pasolini asserted that Marxism’s “great mistake” was in conflating irrationality with late nineteenth-century European decadence.

Broadly, I have organized the evolution of the Mexican field into three phases. The first phase—the decade of the 1970s—was marked by the dissemination of the Spanish translations of curriculum studies texts from the United States, primarily articulating the technicist-behavioral curriculum theory (see Frida Díaz Barriga Arceo’s Chapter 3; Ángel Díaz Barriga’s Chapter 4; William F. Pinar’s Chapter 91). During the second phase—the decade of the 1980s—Mexican field experienced its consolidation in the form of four major curriculum communities (critical theory, constructivism, interpretivism, and professional development), which posed critical challenges to the dominance of the technicist-behavioral curriculum theory of the previous decade (Chapter 3).

While many institutions continued (and still do) to work under the spell of technological rationality in their efforts to make education more “effective” through the application of “scientific” techniques (Chapter 3), this definitive critique of behavioral and positivist curriculum models gave rise to diverse curriculum communities, which promoted distinct traditions, creating “habitus” (Chapter 4), and were accented by the following events: (1) the seminars coordinated by Ángel Díaz Barriga on Bobbitt’s The Curriculum; (2) the seminar on curricular evaluation coordinated by Alicia de Alba as well as her work at ENEP-Zaragoza; (3) the work of the ENEP-Iztacala group led by Alfredo Furlán and Eduardo Remedí; (4) the work of Glazman-Nowalski and María Ibarrola, who drew upon US and 36 ASHWANI KUMAR European sources, among them the work of William Alexander, Michael Apple, David Ausubel, Basil Bernstein, Franklin Bobbitt, Jerome Bruner, John Dewey, Henry Giroux, David Hamilton, Philip Jackson, Stephen Kemmis, Peter McLaren, Anthony Penna, William Pinar, Joseph Schwab, Hilda Taba, Ralph Tyler, Carr Wilfred, Paul Willis, and Michael Young, among others; (5) the works of Susana Barco (who came to Mexico during the time of the Argentinean dictatorship); (6) the influence of Paulo Freire, who came to Mexico on various occasions and whose books have been widely read, analyzed, and put into practice by several generations of curriculum scholars; and (7) the traditions of philosophers, psychoanalysts, and sociologists, among them Louis Althusser, Pierre Bourdieu, Cornelius Castoriadis, Gilles Deleuze, Jacques Derrida, Emile Durkheim, Friedrich Engels, Michel Foucault, Sigmund Freud, Hans-Georg Gadamer, Antonio Gramsci, Jurgen Habermas, Georg Wilhelm Frederich Hegel, Martin Heidegger, Edmund Husserl, Immanuel Kant, Jacques Lacan, Ernesto Laclau, Claude Lévi-Strauss, Jean-François Lyotard, Karl Marx, Friedrich Nietzsche, Nicos Poulantzas, Leon Trotsky, and Slavoj Zizek, among others (Chapter 2).

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