Chapter one

Sociological Introduction

The education of adults is no new phenomenon: it has existed for centuries in one form or another. The Greeks separated education from training and trained their children for their place in the wider society but enabled their adults, who were leisured enough, to be educated. Hence, the education of adults was not new in that society and education itself was a phenomenon that would have been open to the considerations of the social analyst. Indeed, there is a sense in which Plato actually performed that, function, although obviously his analysis formed the basis of the philosophy of education rather than a sociology of education. Many centuries were to elapse before that was to appear. However, over that period ...

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