The problematics of Citizenship Education within the Australian context

Year: 2002

Author: Arcodia, Charles

Type of paper: Refereed paper

A review of the development of the citizenship concept reveals that the educational, social, political and philosophical constructs of citizenship have been consistently problematic. Western educational and political philosophies have provided a series of rich and diverse perspectives on the role of the citizen in society and the way in which education can play a part in the formation of the citizen. Despite an extensive body of literature on citizenship, traditional assumptions have been called into question by worldwide social and cultural changes. In contemporary debates, a variety of educational, social and political influences have been recognised as significant to citizenship formation.

Much of the available literature on citizenship, its role in society and education's role in formation, has been informed by the philosophies, ideologies, conceptual frameworks and experiences constructed in the West. This paper discusses some of the key limitations in the current philosophical foundations that underpin understandings of citizenship education and identifies some key issues relevant to the Australian context.