Pedagogic discourse and transformation: A selective tradition

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This is the second of four essays discussing Wu’s ‘Interpretation, autonomy, and transformation: Chinese pedagogic discourse in a cross-cultural perspective’ (JCS, 43(5), 569-590). The essay is interesting against the background of recent debates, both inside and outside China, about the relationship between the Chinese and Western traditions of curriculum and pedagogy. The essay helps one to understand that there is no clear divide between the so-called Chinese and Western traditions. The modern Chinese language as well as its pedagogical discourse have been hybridized with something western, with the implication that it is difficult to distinguish one from the other. However, the paper falls into a trap of cultural judgement: it (re)interprets the Confucian ‘authentic’ texts as ‘desirable’ and attributes many ‘contemporary’ pedagogical practices and/or the discourse of the so-called ‘Confucian heritage’ to the influence of the West.
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