Education from an anthropological perspective

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* Abstract


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This essay refers to the need to understand the close relationship between the concept of man, society and education. All are part of the same worldview, so education is a reflection of the image of society and that means considering their common features and differentiators.

Pluralistic and open education is typical of modern societies have understood that education should equip people with the tools necessary to function optimally in the community, but in turn must understand that education is not merely a training but that is the link that allows people to take their place in society and this means their comprehensive training, either in specific aspects of their individuality, as well as the acquisition of new knowledge that will allow solving problems and achieve the goals that each one asks.

The man is what makes him education.

Immanuel Kant. German philosopher. 1724 – 1804Development

It is impossible to try to analyze the educational process or learning not to get involved with a conception of man, society and the interaction between the two, since there is a close relationship between man and the host society.

This relationship establishes a bidirectional link which means that they receive from society all that is necessary for the implementation and achievement of the objectives of man and in turn it will respond to it so it has received. Aristotle it showed the situation to raise the so-called zoon politikon is linked to society because it only achieves its ultimate goal, ie happiness.

This approach, focused on the fact that man is naturally provides two-way relationship with their social environment is what makes note that we are faced with a moral act.

Taking into consideration the words of Immanuel Kant referred to the beginning of this reflection, education plays a prominent role when want to study the link between man and society.

Especially, if you understand the concept of educational and capacity of each person to be gaining new knowledge integrated into the social order, one can understand that this will allow a better development cn environment.

This brings about a condition that, having a better development, there will also be an improvement in both individual and collective spheres, since when do better in the environment also benefits to society.

It is necessary to consider that society is not simply the sum of all its members but that it is composed as a whole that develops in harmony. Thus, the qualitative improvement of its members each necessarily lead to improvement for society. Again, it is clear that we are facing a moral act.

In elaborating on this perspective, one can see that education can provide the learner with the tools, skills, competencies and values that are indispensable for their social performance.

In this sense, it is important to consider that the learning process is constant and ongoing, because the skills needed in each individual life stages of development are different and therefore requires new skills so compelling as required subsequently updated.

Without proper update, find the human being lacking the skills and tools necessary for optimal social performance, which is coupled individual achievement and satisfaction.

That is why education becomes a permanent need of human beings, as each day requires new tools and this is evidenced by the tendency to ongoing training to count with the necessary weapons to their job performance, professional and thus its realization.

The tools, skills, competencies and values that are acquired through constant learning, are the elements that allow the man to unfold in the social environment in an efficient manner, ie you have reached what has motivated him to develop an activity . This engine can be intrinsic to humans, as Maslow said when referring to the hierarchy of needs and states that after the physiological needs, it seeks to satisfy the needs for safety and security, then sought membership, so as to achieve interpersonal relationships that enable social integration with harmonious relationships, and finally to meet these needs met, is the pursuit of competition and personal achievement.

Undoubtedly, all these needs become demands that the individual himself is posed to achieve the necessary condition for stability.

It is not necessary to seek to satisfy all these shortcomings, but each stage determines the environment in terms of their own individuality.

It may also be that the generation of this drive to work in the social context than by intrinsic motivation, but due to issues that come from outside the individual. It is this approach which confirms that the action mediated by an external agent to humans, is largely a moral act because it is deliberate, mediated by one end and thoughtful turn.

This implies that the motivation to perform there is also a guided decision-making capacity to achieve a goal. That is, there is a goal to achieve that moves the human being: what motivates them.

Thus, the motivation becomes a means to an end, so it is vital that learning processes are motivating for learners to give meaning to the content developed and thus achieved give it meaning and value to themselves.

Summing up, learning is a mediated view of human motivation for success in the social field.

However, we can also conceptualize the knowledge gained becomes a means or tool to operate efficiently and effectively in the community setting.

It is extremely complex attempt to establish a priori what are the purposes for which human beings must come, because each develops in areas that require different skills, competencies and skills.

Aristotle says that the end of man is happiness, however, this implies that the purpose of guiding human action, is subjective or relative as it depends on each individual. What makes someone happy mind will not necessarily be replicated for others.

The act aimed at a goal makes it necessary to act so that you can solve problems and hardships that arise in the way, that is what is traditionally understood as the act intelligently.

Intelligence is the capacity in which people have to solve problems. This act smart or wise, again demonstrates to us being in the presence of a moral act, because from the moment that the individual has the ability to change or modify the environment to achieve its objectives and its implementation, there is a risk that their actions bring consequences for the community in which it is embedded. This is how education can not be outside the values and morals.

No individual can claim to remain in autarky, requires others to the satisfaction of each and every one of their needs, therefore, it is imperative to know unfold harmoniously with other individuals.

As man requires ongoing training is necessary to achieve understanding of the role it plays in society. Thus, assuming that not only is the subject of rights, but also assumes his duties and responsibilities with their social environment.

This is the area where education plays a role, since it is they, along with families, who harvest the task of socializing or to instill values that are socially and politically dominant. Education should provide a comprehensive education, not only content that is evaluated numerically, but must be beings able to function in society and can give back what they have received from it.

The domain socialized imposing these values are those that allow social interaction and is directly related to the areas of the personality of an individual, ie there must be a balance in the development of areas that allow you to run as well as activities to be developed inducing aspects that are related to the internal areas of each individual. Here it is the strengthening of self-esteem, motivation, managing frustration, tolerance and many other respects, values and virtues that should be included in a comprehensive training process to allow human beings to unfold within the range of social life.

This is how the trainee is not escaping from a vision of man.

It is necessary to understand that the ability of an individual to acquire new behaviors throughout their existence, as you can understand the educational, lies in understanding the role that humans in society.

It is not an isolated individual, is a part of a community and in turn is inclusive of new experiences for social growth, ie while building is constructed.

Is a complex process because education is a continuum, with inputs and outputs in a system that works with a number of relationships among all members of the educational community. Intervention at any level of the system, involves the relocation of the remaining parts of the system. Just as man can not be self-sufficient, education can not lack a vision of man and society.

This relationship is evident when we note that each period of social history, education has been a reflection of the prevailing society.

Education has been providing educators with the tools necessary to function in the community and how it is permeable, education also has been permeated, but also had to take responsibility for maintaining integrity in the training of people, and not enough to train with tools, but he must know their social role and assume a commitment to live in community to contribute to the harmonious development of society.


1. ARANCIBIA, Violeta, HERRERA, Paulina, Straesser, Katherine. Handbook of Educational Psychology. Ediciones Universidad Catolica de Chile. Santiago, 2004.

* Aristotle, “Politics” Panamericana Editorial. Bogota, 1993.

* Maslow, Abraham. Motivation and Personality. Sagittarius Editorial, Barcelona, 1954.

* Sepulveda Parra, Carmen Ochoa Reyes, Luis, PEREZ Pasten, Manuel. Grounds for Learning: A View from the Chilean classrooms. UCSH editions. Santiago, 2003.


Gloria Gonzalez Meyer.

Bachelor of Social Sciences

Political scientist.

Santiago, Chile.