Professor Henry T. Edmonson III of Georgia College & State University's Department of Political Science will speak on the Mercer University campus—Room 251, Stetson Hall—Tuesday, Jan. 13, at 7:30 p.m. The event is co-sponsored by Mercer's Tift College of Education and the Faculty/Staff Christian Fellowship.
Edmonson will lecture on his forthcoming book, Trojan Horse in the Schools: John Dewey and the Decline of American Education. Dewey, who many consider the patron saint of American education, had an influence so pervasive that many of his ideas are taken for granted and their influence hardly recognized in theory and practice.
Edmonson will address many of the issues surrounding Dewey's ideas, such as the decline of the traditional liberal arts curriculum, confusion between school and family authority, persistent habit of pedagogical experimentation, uncertainty over educational accountability and the occasional hostility one often links to religious and traditional values in the classroom.
Edmondson argues that until greater philosophical clarity is achieved in American education, and until the weaknesses of Dewey's educational philosophy are candidly admitted, American educational improvements may be superficial and ephemeral.
John Dunaway, senior fellow for Mercer's University Commons and a Professor of Foreign Languages and Literatures said, "Professor Edmondson is a versatile thinker; he has published on the fiction of Flannery O'Connor, as well as his work on John Dewey. His argument that Dewey's influence on American education has been profoundly deleterious is bound to spark controversy and, hopefully, some serious re-thinking of the educational reform challenge that confronts us in this country."
For more information on the event, contact John Dunaway at 478-301-2897.