References Cited

The Culture of American Education

The Beijing lectures 2001

Professor Hervé Varenne

March 2001


These three lectures were presented at Beijing Normal University in March 2001. I intended them to be a general introduction to the main features of America and its educational systems for a foreign audience I imagined to have little knowledge of American constitutional history and current controversies. In the process of writing these lectures, I found myself playing the possibilities implicit in the word "constitution" as it is normally used in political speech and as it is technically used in ethnomethodology. This might be a way to develop the theory of culture (speech, discourse) as action, locally and globally.


I - America as Cultural Object
The public school as solution and problem


First Lecture

II - The culture of American education
Individual merit for a democratic community

Second Lecture

III - Issues in policy and research
An anthropological perspective

Third Lecture

April 12, 200