Steen Nepper Larsen, Assoc. Prof., Danish School of Education, Aarhus University.
Steen Nepper Larsen
„My view of education is that you give students wings so that they can fly on their own.“ William J.R. Curtis: „The Realm of Architectural Ideas“ (interview conducted by Elise Lorentsen). In: Formation. Architectural Education in a Nordic Perspective. NBAA 2018: 320.
“It is not the amount of what a human being knows or has learned which decides his formation (or: edification), but the inner processing and acquisition of tradition, i.e., a curious vitality and independent judgment." Claudius Wilkens on Bildung (dannelse). In: Salmonsens Konversationsleksikon, Volume V. København: 1916: 750 (my transl.)
Bildung is much more than formalized education and accumulation of ECTS-points. Bildung is the ‘product’ of practicing, experiencing, and experimenting. We get the chance to incorporate the world and to extend the bodily and cognitive syntheses and strengthen the social bonds. Bildung is a challenge, a task, and a necessity to widen the horizon, extend democracy, and foster visions and hope.
This keynote lecture wants to defend, vitalize, and radicalize the rich and untranslatable German concept Bildung in a five-fold way: as knowledge formation, as the formation of the citizen (and ‘the we’), as character formation, as conceptual-historical language critique, and as a fundamental critique of capitalism.