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Thread: Is British History ....

  1. #21
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    I'm in 2 minds about the National Curriculum

    For many schools I have seen the introduction of this as having a positive influence on subjects such a music, without there being a NC these subjects simply would not have happened in many institutions. However, the NC is largely becoming irrelevant anyway as the clear plan is for schools to be able to choose their own path, which will only make things worse for many students.

    In my experience working in schools the NC was a bit of a pain for some really inspired and great teachers BUT for others it forced them to address subjects which they would otherwise have ignored which is more or less what we are going to get now So its a sad time for those students I meet who are passionate and talented in music but happen to go to schools where it's no longer on the agenda and don't have supportive parents.

  2. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by MrGongGong View Post
    I'm not sure that we should only include things which are "useful" in education !

    A bar by bar analysis of Brahms's clarinet quintet hasn't been "useful" in a pragmatic way
    but in other ways ....... priceless
    Yes, I do agree with that, and of course the pursuit of 'pure' research in science, philosophy etc.

    But on the other hand, the ignorance of key areas of history in politicians who are making policy (particularly foreign policy) can be absolutely disastrous as we have seen.

  3. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by aka Calum Da Jazbo View Post
    apart from the murder and mayhem what does the British Empire amount to in contrast to the Industrial Revolution .... now that did change the whole world and is still doing so ...
    ... well, among other things, the British Empire was instrumental in shifting vast populations around the globe with deeply significant subsequent cultural effects. We moved Indian Tamils to Ceylon to work the plantations: Ceylon/Sri Lanka is still trying to resolve some of the issues following this; we moved Indian indentured labour to Fiji to work the sugar which the indigenous Melanesians were not keen to undertake: a hundred years later the Indian population comprises half the make-up of Fiji, and the political situation is currently unresolved; we moved Indian labour to British Guiana and Trinidad/Tobago for similar reasons, with similar unintended consequences.

    I delight in the mix of people I come across here in west London, the mix of which is largely the result of our Empire.

    I am not one of those who go in for undue self-flagellation and post-colonial guilt about what our Empire did - but I think an awareness of its impact on the world we now inhabit - both overseas and here - should be much more fully developed than is currently the case.
    Last edited by vinteuil; 29-04-12 at 13:37.

  4. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by aeolium View Post
    Yes, I do agree with that, and of course the pursuit of 'pure' research in science, philosophy etc.

    But on the other hand, the ignorance of key areas of history in politicians who are making policy (particularly foreign policy) can be absolutely disastrous as we have seen.
    indeed
    so who IS responsible for allowing ignorant people to be in charge of things ? (Gove for example !)

  5. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by MrGongGong View Post
    indeed
    so who IS responsible for allowing ignorant people to be in charge of things ? (Gove for example !)
    ... ah, Gove. Great fan and friend of Jeremy *unt, it appears.

  6. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by vinteuil View Post
    ... ah, Gove. Great fan and friend of Jeremy *unt, it appears.
    What is extraordinary about Gove is that he has managed to alienate more or less the entire teaching profession in such a short space of time , which probably includes the headmaster of Eaton along with the more radical socialist teachers ........ nice one mike

  7. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by vinteuil View Post
    ... ah, Gove. Great fan and friend of Jeremy *unt, it appears.
    Naughtie, Naughtie

  8. #28
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    vinteuil i agree with you about the empire though i find the use of the term vast in relation to the populations we might have moved a bit of an overstatement in the context of the current populations of India and China and as for inherited mess etc let us not leave Africa out of the equation with arbitrary national borders etc ...

    if history is to be part of education then we should understand what we mena by both terms and their purposes i suppose ... despite reading quite a bit of 'moral' social psychology lately [haidt and unsatisfying] i am still under the spell of After Virtue

    MacIntyre charges a strong critique against individualist political philosophy, such as John Rawls' A Theory of Justice and Robert Nozick's Anarchy, State, and Utopia. To MacIntyre, morals and virtues can only be comprehended through their relation to the community in which they come from. Whereas Rawls tells us to conceive of justice through abstracting ourselves from who we are (through the veil of ignorance, for example) MacIntyre disagrees. Running throughout 'After Virtue' is the belief that in order to comprehend who we are, we must understand where we come from.
    and i would add where we might be heading [depressing as that prospect is nowadays]
    ébloui par l'obscurité

  9. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by aka Calum Da Jazbo View Post
    i am still under the spell of After Virtue -

    "Whereas Rawls tells us to conceive of justice through abstracting ourselves from who we are (through the veil of ignorance, for example) MacIntyre disagrees. Running throughout 'After Virtue' is the belief that in order to comprehend who we are, we must understand where we come from. "


    Yes, I find much of interest in Macintyre.

    The reference you make from After Virtue could, of course, have come straight from Burke's Reflections on the Revolution in France
    Last edited by vinteuil; 29-04-12 at 16:11.

  10. #30
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    as may be alas i have never read Mr Burke ...

    I have a great opinion of Thomas Paine, and of all his productions. I remember his having been one of the Committee for forming one of their annual Constitutions, I mean the admirable Constitution of 1793—after having been a Chamber Counsel to the no less admirable Constitution of 1791. This pious patriot has his eyes still directed to his dear native country, notwithstanding her ingratitude to so kind a benefactor. This outlaw of England, and lawgiver to France, is now, in secret probably, trying his hand again; and inviting us to him by making his Constitution such, as may give his disciples in England some plausible pretext for going into the house that he has opened. We have discovered, it seems, that all, which the boasted wisdom of our ancestors has laboured to bring to perfection for six or seven centuries, is nearly or altogether matched in six or seven days, at the leisure hours and sober intervals of Citizen Thomas Paine.

    But though the treacherous tapster Thomas
    Hangs a new Angel two doors from us,
    As fine as daubers' hands can make it,
    In hopes that strangers may mistake it;
    We think it both a shame and sin
    To quit the good old Angel Inn.

    Indeed in this good old House, where every thing, at least, is well aired, I shall be content to put up my fatigued horses, and here take a bed for the long night that begins to darken upon me. Had I, however, the honour (I must now call it so) of being a Member of any of the Constitutional Clubs, I should think I had carried my point most completely. It is clear, by the applauses bestowed on what the Author calls this new Constitution, a mixed Oligarchy, that the difference between the Clubbists and the old adherents to the Monarchy of this country is hardly worth a scuffle. Let it depart in peace, and light lie the earth on the British Constitution!
    would he i wonder, were he to be a present day resident of Beijing be as much in favour of the Politburo as the English Monarchy and it's continuity and stability?
    ébloui par l'obscurité

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