Cai Yuanpei’s vision of aesthetic education and his legacy in China

Ning LUO, Tao GUAN

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapters

2 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Cai Yuanpei was a traditionally educated Chinese scholar who later turned his attention to Western philosophy and played a central role in the development of Republican educational philosophies and institutions, with a legacy that continues to inform education in China. Studies tend to interpret Cai Yuanpei’s approach to aesthetic education in light of his educational experience in Germany, regarding him as a Kantian scholar. However, the Confucian roots of his aesthetic education seldom draw scholarly attention. To fill that gap, this chapter examines Cai’s vision of aesthetic education based on both his academic background in the East and his knowledge of Western philosophy, and maps out his influence on and legacy in aesthetic education in China. It argues that Cai’s vision of aesthetic education has influenced contemporary Chinese education in four main ways: by advocating aesthetic education as social reconstruction, by bridging the gap between moral education and aesthetic education to nurture citizenship, by encouraging aesthetic education for whole-person development, and by adopting an interdisciplinary approach to school aesthetic education. The chapter concludes with reflections on the enduring value of Cai’s vision of aesthetic education for contemporary China, but also worldwide, as international education is increasingly diversified and broadened by the notions of decolonization and global competence. Copyright © 2023 The Author(s), under exclusive license to Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationComparative and decolonial studies in philosophy of education
EditorsDavid G. HEBERT
Place of PublicationSingapore
PublisherSpringer
Pages15-31
ISBN (Electronic)9789819901395
ISBN (Print)9789819901388
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2023

Citation

Luo, N., & Guan, T. (2023). Cai Yuanpei’s vision of aesthetic education and his legacy in China. In D. G. Hebert (Ed.), Comparative and decolonial studies in philosophy of education (pp. 15-31). Springer. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-981-99-0139-5_2

Keywords

  • Cai Yuanpei
  • Aesthetic education
  • China
  • Humanism
  • Social harmony

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