ERG SES H 01, Higher Education
How were European universities established and what factors had an impact on their development? How did Muslim universities/schools influence the evolution of European ones? What impact did colonial history writing have on the post-colonial history writing of education? Can Muslim universities be considered forerunners of European ones? If so, what are the implications? What are the conclusions of the discourse on the history of universities? Were there universities in Europe before the 13th century (e.g. the ones in Paris, Bologna or Oxford)?
The formation of universities was not widely discussed during colonisation: it gained focus through post-colonialism and the search for identity of emerging nations and cultures outside Europe in the 19th century: the demand for the recognition of their achievements and breaking with Eurocentrism and Ethnocentrism, which, in the East, materialised in a redefined orientalism and post-colonialist history writing (in response to colonialism).
This also provided the context of debates on the formation of universities focusing on the issues of the various, either narrow (with the criteria of autonomy/incorporation and academic freedom) or broad (not insisting on those criteria) definitions of universities in addition to their origins. The issue seemed to be trapped in debates revolving around definitions. The main trends of discussions about the formation of universities are defined by arguments for and against orientalism as well as more critical and more conciliatory approaches. At present, orientalists, many Muslim and non-European historians as well as some of the Europeans either consider Islamic universities the forerunners of European universities (and regard them as universities by definition, e.g. Said, 2005 and his followers) or equally important products of other large cultures and humanity (e.g. Meuleman, Davidov, Bulliet, Mokhtar, Lulat, Moutsios, Kéri, Simon, Maróth, Goldziher, Germanus).
Many aspects of education at its beginnings show a somewhat similar structure before the 13th century: religious institutions serving as places for teaching; the reasons for the emergence of literacy; the purpose, the structure and the system of education; the thesis and its defense; the examination system and earning degrees; mobility; the organization structure of the institutions; the autonomy and the local jurisdiction; the division of religious and non-religious legal rights and its later development in philosophy; the subjects taught and the faculties (schools of religious rites – denominations/nations/faculties); and the system of residential schools. However, due to the scarcity of sources, actual connections cannot be verified. Nevertheless, European universities were not created out of nothing; they must have been based on “models” in their environment, and it is likely that Muslim schools were their predecessors. It is proved that Europeans adopted several features of Islamic education that are now key elements of modern Western universities (e.g. the body of knowledge, rationalism, secular and scientific approach as well as exact sciences and disciplines).
The birth of post-colonialism as a discipline was largely due to the book Orientalism (1978) by EDWARD SAID, a professor at Columbia University, considered to be the father of post-colonialism. In response, the most radical (and Zionist) member of the opposing camp, BERNARD LEWIS wrote his Islam and the West (1993). Some expressed more subtle criticism, including ROBERT IRWIN (For Lust of Knowing: The Orientalists and their Enemies, 2007). As opposed to orientalists and their opponents, authors relying on more precise information e.g. Richard W. BULLIET (The Case of Islamo-Chritian Civilization, 2004), Roger ARNALDEZ (À la croisée de troi monotheism: Une Communité de pensée au Moyen Age, 1993), the comparative historian of religion Karen AMSTRONG (Mohamed. Az iszlám nyugati szemmel, 1998) and W. MONTGOMER Watt (Islamic Surveys: The Influence of Islam on Medieval Europe, 1972) emphasised the equal recognition of both cultures (Muslim and European) and criticised orientalists and their opponents for their inaccuracy and their often personal disputes. LEWIS, whose fear about the “Arab danger” persisted later on, responded by the subtitle Western Impact and Middle Eastern Res¬ponse of his book titled What Went Wrong (LEWIS, 2002) to two chapters of WATT’s aforementioned writing (The distinctive character of the Islamic impact and Islamic presence and European response) (WATT, 1972: 9, 13).
00. Central Events (Keynotes, EERA-Panel, EERJ Round Table, Invited Sessions)
Network 1. Continuing Professional Development: Learning for Individuals, Leaders, and Organisations
Network 2. Vocational Education and Training (VETNET)
Network 3. Curriculum Innovation
Network 4. Inclusive Education
Network 5. Children and Youth at Risk and Urban Education
Network 6. Open Learning: Media, Environments and Cultures
Network 7. Social Justice and Intercultural Education
Network 8. Research on Health Education
Network 9. Assessment, Evaluation, Testing and Measurement
Network 10. Teacher Education Research
Network 11. Educational Effectiveness and Quality Assurance
Network 12. LISnet - Library and Information Science Network
Network 13. Philosophy of Education
Network 14. Communities, Families and Schooling in Educational Research
Network 15. Research Partnerships in Education
Network 16. ICT in Education and Training
Network 17. Histories of Education
Network 18. Research in Sport Pedagogy
Network 19. Ethnography
Network 20. Research in Innovative Intercultural Learning Environments
Network 22. Research in Higher Education
Network 23. Policy Studies and Politics of Education
Network 24. Mathematics Education Research
Network 25. Research on Children's Rights in Education
Network 26. Educational Leadership
Network 27. Didactics – Learning and Teaching
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