Null, J. Wesley
A Disciplined Progressive Educator
The Life and Career of William Chandler Bagley
Year of Publication: 2003
New York, Bern, Berlin, Bruxelles, Frankfurt/M., Oxford, Wien, 2003. XXVI, 341 pp., 18 ill.
ISBN 978-0-8204-6909-6 pb. (Softcover)
Weight: 0.520 kg, 1.146 lbs
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Throughout his almost fifty-year career in education, William Chandler Bagley (1874-1946) served as an untiring fighter for liberal and professional education as well as the education of teachers. He was both a supporter and a critic of John Dewey and the complex movement known as progressive (i.e. democratic) education. During the 1920s, he insightfully critiqued the intelligence testing movement and its detrimental effects on minority children. At the end of his long career, he became known as the founder of «essentialism», a movement in educational thought that he and others sought to create in the late 1930s. Bagley is a major figure in twentieth-century American educational thought, whose legacy as a democratic educator and educator of teachers merits much more attention than it has received. This book argues that Bagley's tradition in democratic education should be at least as well known as the tradition put forth by John Dewey.
About the author(s)/editor(s)
The Author: J. Wesley Null has served as a public school history and science teacher in New Mexico and Texas. He completed his Ph.D. at The University of Texas at Austin where he studied the history of education and curriculum. As Assistant Professor in the School of Education at Baylor University in Waco, Texas, he teaches interdisciplinary courses in the university's core curriculum, as well as educational studies and curriculum in the School of Education.
«William Chandler Bagley was the most prominent critic of progressivism in the first half of the twentieth century, but his works have until recently been forgotten. J. Wesley Null has done the rest of us a great favor by writing a history of this important educational thinker.» (Diane Ravitch, Research Professor, New York University)
«J. Wesley Null's account of the life and work of William Chandler Bagley describes an educator who refused to be captured by the ideological debates of his times, was able to rise above those debates, and developed educational views that defied conventional categories. Bagley provides contemporary educationists and educators a model to emulate in their own work.» (Wayne J. Urban, Regents' Professor of Educational Policy Studies and Professor of History, Georgia State University)
«This historical study serves as an important, thoroughly researched reinterpretation of William Chandler Bagley's life. J. Wesley Null sheds much light on his subject's very complex times and also offers much for prospective reformers today to consider about ours.» (Michael Whelan, Associate Professor of History, Montclair State University, New Jersey)
History of Schools and Schooling. Vol. 43
General Editors: Alan R. Sadovnik and Susan F. Semel