(CZ) Časopis Pedagogika jubiluje
(EN) Pedagogika journal celebrates its jubilee
Autor / Author: Váňová, R.
Klíčová slova / Key words:
The year 2000 marks half a century in the life of the journal Pedagogika. The editors have therefore decided to dedicate this year’s monothematic issue to the jubilee. Its aim is to present the fifty-year development of the magazine and especially the fifty- year development of educational science and theory as it can be traced on the magazine’s pages. Several members of the editorial board showed spontaneous interest in writing articles. Relatively soon the concept of the celebratory issue emerged. It would start with a more general article identifying the basic developmental tendencies of the journal and go on to the studies devoted to the development of the different educational fields. However the reactions of the experts approached only allowed partial fulfilment of this plan. It is especially regrettable that it proved impossible to obtain a study of the development of didactis, which in the last fifty years has been the most advanced educational discipline in this country. The issue that you have before you is composed of four long texts. It includes two articles more general in nature and two specialised articles, the first tracing the development of educational psychology and the second the development of educational historiography. The first two articles, Váňová, R., Educational Science on the Pages o f Pedagogika (for the 50th anniversary o f the journal‘s foundation) and Průcha, J., Fifty Years o f the Journal Pedagogika: The Medium o f Czech Educational Science in Historical Perspektive are not intended to compete on the same ground. One of them emerged in its present form as a result of the desire of the author to broaden her original plan for an article on the development of educational research. Both articles set themselves the similar aim of uncovering whether even under seriously limiting political conditions educational theory managed to develop in Czechoslovakia and of defining the main fields of that development. Both authors use a similar approach, i.e. an essentially descriptive technique which in places turns into analysis and assessment. (J. Průcha also uses the method of quantitative analysis). Nonetheless the articles are examples of two different conceptions of the same theme, and this will undoubtedly lead readers to compare them and the evaluative criteria they employ. This shows that despite a declared and genuine effort at objectivity, personal characteristics, field of discipline, professional engagement with the material analysed and probably life experience as well have all influenced the authors’ emphasis and the mode of interpretation and assessment. Jiří Mareš has focused on educational psychology as it developed over the last fifty years. In his overview study, entitled. Mareš, J., Educational-Psychological Articles published in the journal Pedagogika in 1951-2000 he has chosen a thematic rather than a chronological approach (and this is also the case in his description of empirical research projects). He maps the themes and authors of articles, reports and reviews and analyses articles on educational psychology in detail. As a starting point he uses tables that he has drawn up and which offer exhaustive information on educational psychological research in the last fifty years in a unified form. The table components are the major fruit of his work. (Their extent means that they will be published in the next issue). The study is a precise description of marked informative value. The author, evidently on purpose, does not go beyond the descriptive level and does not embark on the necessary task of drawing evaluative conclusions. The young historian D. Nejedlá from the Charles University Faculty of Education has devoted attention to the development of educational historiography, (Historical Themes on the Pages o f Pedagogika in the Last Fifty Years). She takes both a chronological and a “quantitative-thematic” approach, i.e. she identifies a number of historical texts and the prevalent themes in particular periods, and tries to explain both the variations in the numbers of published studies and the thematic focus of historical texts. In her contribution she also draws attention to Comeniology. All the studies conclude that educational science definitely expanded and advanced in this country over the last fifty years (given that all the authors consider not only published articles but also the reports and review sections, their conclusions can be taken as general, i.e. not referring just to the texts on the pages of the Pedagogika journal). They infer this from the numbers of articles, the progressive differentiation of areas of educational science leading to the emergence of new disciplines, the tackling of new themes, of development education and of educational psychological methodology. For the moment let us leave aside the more precise conclusions that educational science developed unevenly, the stagnation of some disciplines was not just caused by political and ideological pressure and the situation remains unsatisfactory even today.) It should be remembered, however, that this conclusion was based mainly on a quantitative analysis and says little about the quality of the published output. Understandably, a quantitative analysis of educational fields was not the aim of the authors of the general studies, and, as is apparent, the huge quantity of material means that the authors of the specialised studies have not been able to embark on qualitative evaluation either. A qualitative analysis of Czechoslovak (and later Czech) post-war educational output is, however, essential for many reasons. The studies published in this issue should therefore be regarded as both a first step and a challenge. The articles have at the same time shown that the Pedagogika journal, although dominated by official ideology for forty years, was a genuine medium of educational science. Best wishes and celebrations are inseparable from jubilees. What can we wish for Pedagogika? Above all good authors and demanding readers. But also self-sacrificing editors and a good financial background. And how can we celebrate it? Celebration always involves taking stock - and that is the content of this number. It is serious and critical. You can always speak the truth to a lady in her fifties.
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