Parcours historiographiques


The Annales and Education

Articles selected by Étienne Anheim (Texts published before 2012 are available in French only)

As early as 1937, the Annales published a now famous text by Marc Bloch and Lucien Febvre, devoted to the teaching of history in French schools and its need for reform. In the years that followed, this interest in pedagogical issues resurfaced in a number of texts by the two founders of the journal, who were interested in secondary as much as university-level teaching. It was also present in the work of Fernand Braudel, who authored a textbook destined for secondary-school students—the Grammaire des civilisations—and served as president of the jury for the agrégation, part of France’s system for recruiting teachers through competitive examinations, or concours. Evidence of this interest is also apparent in a number of articles published during the 1960s, such as that by Suzanne Citron, and in the place given to the sociology of teaching and education between the end of the 1960s and the 1980s. In the France of today, a number of factors—including reforms to both school curricula and teacher recruitment exams—have returned teaching to the center of public debate. At the same time, the link between teaching and research can appear fragile within the university community. In this context, certain questions resurface concerning the place of a journal like the Annales—and more broadly the role of academic research in history and the social sciences—within the education system. Is it still relevant for an international academic journal to address a broad public of “educators” working in both higher and secondary education? What is the pedagogical goal of historical research and, indeed, must it even have one? What can research into the history and sociology of education still offer to its actual practitioners? Under what conditions can historical research in general nourish the knowledge and practice of teachers in middle and high schools as well as at undergraduate level? More broadly, do the increasing specialization, professionalization, and technicality of our disciplines mean that historians are no longer able to fulfill the social role that is nevertheless often attributed to them (and to which they sometimes lay claim themselves)? The Annales first sought to reopen this debate at the Rendez-vous de l’histoire de Blois during a round table held on Saturday October 12, 2013. It is now time to explore it more thoroughly, and to revisit not only the links between the world of scholarship and schools, but also the connection between historians and the public sphere.

Marc Bloch and Lucien Febvre, “Pour le renouveau de l’enseignement historique,” 9-2 (1937): 113-29.

Lucien Febvre, “Ce grand personnage historique ? L’école primaire,” n. s., 8-1 (1945): 141-46.

A.-V. Jacquet, “A la lueur de l’expérience : L’école rurale, grave problème,” 1-3 (1946): 247-60.

Gérard Genette, “Enseignement et rhétorique au XXe siècle,” 21-2 (1966): 292-305.

Suzanne Citron, “Dans l’enseignement secondaire : pour l’aggiornamento de l’histoire-géographie,” 23-1 (1968): 136-43.

Raymond Boudon, “La crise universitaire française : essai de diagnostic,” 24-3 (1969): 738-64.

Monique de Saint-Martin and Pierre Bourdieu, “L’excellence scolaire et les valeurs du système d’enseignement français,” vol. 25-1 (1970): 147-75.

Pascale Gruson, “Transformation des systèmes d’enseignement : note critique,” 28-5 (1973): 1303-10.

Jean Hébrard, “École et alphabétisation au XIXe siècle (approche psycho-pédagogique de documents historiques). Note critique,” 35-1 (1980): 66-80.

Michel de Certeau, “Économies ethniques : pour une école de la diversité,” 41-4 (1986): 789-815.

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