T. R.(Reg) Batten and Madge Batten, non-directivity and community development

T. R.(Reg) Batten and Madge Batten, non-directivity and community development: The Battens, and particularly T. R. or Reg, introduced the revolutionary concept of non-directivity to the newly emerging discipline of community development in the second part of the 20th century. George Lovell describes their work and lives, and explores the origins of the non-directive concept […]

Martin Buber on education

Martin Buber on education. Buber’s focus on dialogue and community would alone mark him out as an important thinker for educators. But when this is added to his fundamental concern with encounter and how we are with each other (and the world) his contribution is unique and yet often unrecognized. contents: life · i-you, i-it […]

What is community?

Community. What is community and why should educators be concerned with it? We explore the development of theory around community, and the significance of boundaries, social networks and social norms – and why attention to social capital and communion may be important. contents: approaching the theory of community · community and boundary · community and […]

Community centres (centers) and associations: their history, theory, development and practice

Community centres (centers) and associations: their history, theory, development and practice. Community centers (centres) and associations have played a significant part in the life of many local communities and networks. Yet relatively little has been written about their history theory and practice. In this piece we examine a little of their development and the ideas […]

Community studies

Over the years a distinctive body of literature has developed around ‘community studies’. Individual contributions tend to fall across disciplinary boundaries – some are labelled as sociology, some as anthropology, and yet others as geography or urban studies. What follows is a quick guide to the literature and an attempt to bring out some key […]

What is community work?

What is community work? How has it developed in the UK? What is it’s current state? We review thinking and practice in the field of community work, and question the direction it is currently taking. contents: introduction · the emergence of community work · the gulbenkian report: community work and social change · the community […]

John Dewey on education, experience and community

John Dewey on education, experience and community. Arguably the most influential thinker on education in the twentieth century, Dewey’s contribution lies along several fronts. His attention to experience and reflection, democracy and community, and to environments for learning have been seminal. (This ‘John Dewey’ page is due to be extended). John Dewey (1859 – 1952) […]

Mary Parker Follett: community, creative experience and education

Mary Parker Follett graduation picture 1891 Mary Parker Follett: community, creative experience and education. With her concern for creative experience, democracy and for developing local community organizations, Mary Parker Follett is an often forgotten, but still deeply instructive thinker for educators, pedagogues and social animateurs. contents: introduction · Mary Parker Follett – life · The […]

Eduard C. Lindeman and the meaning of adult education

Eduard C. Lindeman and the meaning of adult education. Perhaps best known today for his work in adult education, Eduard C. Lindeman (1885 – 1953) also wrote one of the first books on community development, was an early explorer of groupwork and worked to extend popular education. In this piece, we explore his life and […]

Parker J. Palmer: community, knowing and spirituality in education

Parker J. Palmer: community, knowing and spirituality in education. Parker J. Palmer’s explorations of education as a spiritual journey and of the inner lives of educators have been deeply influential. We explore his teachings and contribution. contents: introduction · parker j. palmer – life · education as a spiritual journey · parker palmer – knowing, teaching […]

Henry Solly and the Working Men’s Club and Institute Union

Founder of the Working Men’s Club and Institute Union and a great propagandist for clubs, Henry Solly provided a much needed conceptual clarity to the notion of club work. He also was an important advocate for the extension of working-class political rights and helped to set up the Charity Organization Society. contents: introduction · involvement […]

Raymond Williams and education – a slow reach again for control

Raymond Williams and education – a slow reach again for control. Raymond Williams was a literary critic, cultural historian, cultural and political theorist, novelist, dramatist, and the virtual inventor of the interdisciplinary field known as ‘cultural studies’. Josh Cole explores his little appreciated contribution as an educational thinker. Contents: introduction · early encounters with community […]

Peter Willmott – community, family and public policy

Peter Willmott – community, family and public policy. Peter Willmott (1923-2000) played an important role in deepening appreciation of the experiences of people in families and local communities. As a sociologist, researcher and communicator he was able to speak to some of the most important concerns of his time. We assess his work and contribution. […]

Robert A. Woods: Settlements, neighbourhoods and associations

Robert A. Woods: Settlements, neighbourhoods and associations. Robert Archey Woods played a pivotal role in the introduction and development of university and social settlements in the United States of America. In this brief assessment we outline his contribution. contents: introduction · conclusion · bibliography · how to cite this article Robert Archey Woods (1865-1925) was […]

Michael Young: community, change and social innovation

Michael Young: community, change and social innovation. Michael Young made a profound contribution to social reform in Britain during the second half of the twentieth century. The innovative organizations he helped establish in the fields of education, consumer rights and health services have touched the lives of many people. Some of Michael Young’s proposals such […]