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Holistic education and visions of rehumanized futures

Author(s): Jennifer M. Gidley

Journal: RoSE : Research on Steiner Education
ISSN 1891-6511

Volume: 1;
Issue: 2;
Start page: 139;
Date: 2010;
Original page

Keywords: Youth futures | holistic education | social futures | Rudolf Steiner | Waldorf education | preferred futures

This paper reports the findings of qualitative research which investigated the views and visions of their futures of Steiner-educated senior secondary students in Australia. The students’ visions of their “positive preferred futures” were strongly focused on social futures in contrast to the wider youth futures research, which demonstrated a stronger focus on techno-fix solutions. In exploring the human qualities the students thought they should develop to contribute to their ideal world in 2020, they identified such factors as more activism, more awareness, attitude and values changes, more spirituality and future care. The findings also showed that the students valued social equality, diversity, tolerance and community as important contributions to a peaceful, communicative world. Many of the students’ preferred futures also paid attention to the needs of the environment, reflecting not just sustainable development but views that were closer to the eco-philosophers who argue for a re-enchantment of the world. In conclusion, there is an exploration of theoretical and practical links between the findings and recent speculations of educational futurists in regard to educating young people for the 21st century.

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