"Between a passive observer and a participant": contexts for a reflection on education towards being a citizen and towards
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In the article a reflection on contexts for education towards being a citizen and towards civic engagement was undertaken. The contexts are primarily categories of democracy, civism, citizenship and the citizen as well as civic engagement. All of them find their mediation in the area of what is called the modern world, whose problems and dilemmas affect both the perception of the aforementioned categories and education towards citizenship. When reflecting on the categories, reference was made in part to terminological, semantic and extensional ambiguities that have arisen in the literature in the field. lt is quite characteristic of this issue that the higher number of people deal with it, the more intricacies and ambiguities appear and the more new areas worth reflection are revealed. This all has its implications in reflections on civic education. Education for being a citizen and for civic engagement is a rather complex intellectual construct. Although it does not belong to the discoveries of our times, as it has its own perennial tradition, yet only the period of transformation and development of democratic society gave it a new dimension and triggered a discussion on its role and significance. In the text, references to S. Ranson’s concept of learning citizenship were made. Attention was drawn to its main assumptions as well as weaknesses, especially evident in view of disclosed unfavourable individual and social behaviour, which, according to analyses and reports, is still of relatively substantial dimensions despite positive changes being reported. The work also highlights the role of school as an institution towards which in the past years expectations were formulated, and they still are, in the field of educating children and adolescents towards citizenship and towards their transformation from a passive observer to a participant of civic communities.
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