Learning Cities in Late Antiquity by Jan R. Stenger Book PDF Summary
Education in the Graeco-Roman world was a hallmark of the polis. Yet the complex ways in which pedagogical theory and practice intersected with their local environments has not been much explored in recent scholarship. Learning Cities in Late Antiquity suggests a new explanatory model that helps to understand better how conditions in the cities shaped learning and teaching, and how, in turn, education had an impact on its urban context. Drawing inspiration from the modern idea of ‘learning cities’, the chapters explore the interplay of teachers, learners, political leaders, communities and institutions in the Mediterranean polis, with a focus on the well-documented city of Gaza in the sixth century CE. They demonstrate in detail that formal and informal teaching, as well as educational thinking, not only responded to specifically local needs, but also exerted considerable influence on local society. With its interdisciplinary and comparatist approach, the volume aims to contextualise ancient education, in order to stimulate further research on ancient learning cities. It also highlights the benefits of historical research to theory and practice in modern education.