The concept of a deep interconnection between education, work and salvation is a durable heritage of the Protestant revolution. Luther emphasises, especially in his writings on education, the need to learn and celebrate God through work in the realm of one’s own position in society (Stand and Amt), thus building the conceptual framework in which Beruf shifted from the meaning of “divine calling” to its more recent significance. The focus on individual empow-erment of Luther’s reflection was strong enough to survive the secularisation of the West and even transform itself in the American narrative of the “self-made man”. Losing its metaphysical roots, the Protestant culture of education and work was able to adapt perfectly to the needs of advanced capitalism, placing personal fulfillment within the unrelenting quest of a job or career. In order to understand and critically define the “neoliberal turn”, education currently faces the challenge of reflecting on the roots of Beruf and locating a new secular meaning that is able to rediscover its complexity. A close reading analysis of selected texts by Luther will try both to understand this long history and offer hints for a contemporary pedagogy of work.

Early modern Beruf and its spoiled children: neoliberalism and work revisited under the lens of Luther’s educational reflection / Salvarani, Luana. - (2022), pp. 21-35.

Early modern Beruf and its spoiled children: neoliberalism and work revisited under the lens of Luther’s educational reflection

Luana Salvarani
2022

Abstract

The concept of a deep interconnection between education, work and salvation is a durable heritage of the Protestant revolution. Luther emphasises, especially in his writings on education, the need to learn and celebrate God through work in the realm of one’s own position in society (Stand and Amt), thus building the conceptual framework in which Beruf shifted from the meaning of “divine calling” to its more recent significance. The focus on individual empow-erment of Luther’s reflection was strong enough to survive the secularisation of the West and even transform itself in the American narrative of the “self-made man”. Losing its metaphysical roots, the Protestant culture of education and work was able to adapt perfectly to the needs of advanced capitalism, placing personal fulfillment within the unrelenting quest of a job or career. In order to understand and critically define the “neoliberal turn”, education currently faces the challenge of reflecting on the roots of Beruf and locating a new secular meaning that is able to rediscover its complexity. A close reading analysis of selected texts by Luther will try both to understand this long history and offer hints for a contemporary pedagogy of work.
9783779968153
Die tiefgreifende Verflechtung zwischen Erziehung, Arbeit und Seelenheil ist ein Erbe der Reformation. Besonders in seinen Schriften zur Erziehung betont Luther, dass es eine Verpflichtung gibt zu lernen gibt und Gott durch die eigene dem Stand entsprechende Arbeit zu dienen. Er begründete einen konzeptionellen Rahmen, in dem sich die Bedeutung von Beruf von einer „gött-lichen Berufung“ hin zur aktuellen Bedeutung verschob. Der Schwerpunkt der Luther’schen Idee einer Stärkung des Individuums war stark genug, die Säkulari-sierung des „Westens“ zu überdauern und transformierte sich in die Idee des amerikanischen Narrativs eines „self-made man“. Der metaphysischen Wurzeln beraubt, fügte sich die protestantische Kultur der Erziehung und der Arbeit perfekt in die Notwendigkeiten des fortgeschrittenen Kapitalismus, in das un-erbittliche Streben nach Job oder Karriere. Um den „neoliberal turn“ zu verstehen und kritisch zu hinterfragen, erscheint es heute unerlässlich, zu den Wurzeln des Konzepts „Beruf“ zurückzukehren und ihm eine neue säkulare Bedeutung zu verleihen, indem seine Komplexität entfaltet wird. Der vorliegende Artikel ana-lysiert mit „close reading“ eine Auswahl der Texte Luthers, um die Geschichte von „Beruf“ zu verstehen und Anstöße für eine zeitgemäße Pädagogik der Arbeit zu geben.
Early modern Beruf and its spoiled children: neoliberalism and work revisited under the lens of Luther’s educational reflection / Salvarani, Luana. - (2022), pp. 21-35.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11381/2904795
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