chapter
Introduction
China through the Lens of Comparative Education
Pages 13

This chapter deals with a range of theories and methods in comparative education research that hoped could illumine issues of Chinese education. Comparative education is a sub-field of education that has a history going back a hundred years in universities such as Teachers College Columbia, University of Toronto and the University of London, yet it has never gained the established position enjoyed by areas such as psychology, philosophy or sociology of education, probably reflecting the Western university's preference for clearly established disciplines. The World Order Models Project provided a frame for looking at issues of exploitation and inequity in a multi-dimensional way, beyond the economic determinism of Marxist approaches, yet it lacked an adequate frame for the consideration of knowledge interaction and dialogue. The metaphor of redemption might prove less evocative for Chinese than Westerners, yet a Confucian approach could articulate it in terms of the humanization of modernity.