IMC 2005: Sessions

Session 611: Bringing Up and Educating Children

Tuesday 12 July 2005, 11.15-12.45

Moderator/Chair:Mayke de Jong, Instituut Geschiedenis, Universiteit Utrecht
Paper 611-aChildren, Asceticism, and Familial Strategies in the 4th and 5th Centuries
(Language: English)
Ville Vuolanto, Department of History, University of Tampere
Index terms: Daily Life, Monasticism, Social History
Paper 611-bGrowing up Northumbrian: Education and Station in Anglo-Saxon England
(Language: English)
Mark LaCelle-Peterson, Department of Education, Houghton College
Index terms: Daily Life, Education, Teaching the Middle Ages
Paper 611-cMoral Philosophy and Secularization in Later Medieval Education
(Language: English)
Charles F. Briggs, Georgia Southern University
Index terms: Education, Learning (The Classical Inheritance), Mentalities, Political Thought

Abstract paper a) My paper will discuss the early development of the habit of dedicating children to ascetic life and ecclesiastical career in the Western Mediterranean. Chronologically the paper will span from the late fourth century to circa 500 AD, Regula Benedicti and Regula Magistri serving as the finishing points. I am especially interested in the different roles that the dedication of children can play in the context of the familial strategies, in the culture traditionally much preoccupied with the biological continuity of the family. The sources consist of letters, hagiographical material and tractates propagating virginity.

Paper b) In recent decades, scholarship has provided a needed corrective to the view of the middle ages as the epoch without childhood. Scholarship in the history of education, however, continues to view the early middle ages as, simply, ‘the epoch without schools’. This paper uses the conceptual framework of educational anthropology to develop an account of formation of self-in-society in the Anglo-Saxon period with particular attention to the early lives of Cuthbert and the writings by and about Bede with the aim of bringing the early medieval period into the mainstream of teaching on the history of education in the preparation of teachers.

Paper c) There has been a tendency in scholarship to credit humanism with being chiefly responsible for the movement to a more laicized, secularized intellectual culture at the end of the Middle Ages. I agree that such a trend is discernable to some extent in late medieval/Renaissance culture, and that the humanists’ had some role in promoting it. Nonetheless I will contend in this paper that a study of moral philosophical instruction in those most non-humanist of educational settings, the later medieval universities and mendicant studia provides a richer and more nuanced understanding of this important aspect of cultural change.