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From Classicism to Method: John Dewey and Bernard Lonergan

William M. Shea
American Journal of Education
Vol. 99, No. 3 (May, 1991), pp. 298-319
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/1085788
Page Count: 22
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From Classicism to Method: John Dewey and Bernard Lonergan
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Abstract

The current battle among critics and theorists of American higher education is in fact over the relationship between theory and practice. For a century, however confusedly and with whatever setbacks, classicism has been loosing its grip on education, and on culture in general, and has been replaced by method. William Bennett expressed the fear of many that method means relativism. John Dewey and Bernard Lonergan provide an interpretation of the movement from classicism to method and its significance to education. The chief spokesman for pragmatism and the Jesuit methodologist, for all their differences in other substantive matters, find that education is not a passive acceptance of tradition but a critical appropriation of it. Classics are central to the reconstruction of traditions, but classicism is no longer an adequate explanation of their importance or their place in education.

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