Kymlicka, Will (1997) Education for Citizenship. IHS Political Science Series No. 40, February 1997. [Working Paper]
Although it is widely accepted that a basic task of schooling is to prepare each new generation for their responsibilities as citizens, the appropriate form and content of citizenship education is often controversial. This paper discusses some of these controversies. I begin by arguing that citizenship is more complicated than is often realized, and that even ‘minimal’ conceptions of citizenship impose significant obligations and constraints on individual and group behaviour. I then consider three inter-related areas of debate: whether citizenship education requires common schooling; whether promoting responsible citizenship requires promoting personal autonomy; and whether promoting a shared civic identity requires teaching not only shared political values or principles but also promoting particular national or cultural identities. These three issues help illustrate the centrality of education for citizenship to both political theory and educational philosophy.
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