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Colección: La Educación
Número: (119) III
Año: 1994

dialogo foto.jpg (78220 bytes)
Winfried Böhm, Director of the Pedagogical Institute at the University of Wurzburg, Germany, was
interviewed by La Educación. The interview was conducted by Carlos E. Paldao.(Photo: SIP)
Winfried Böhm was born in Czechoslovakia in 1937 to German parents. He studied philosphy, pedagogy, theology, history, political science and music at the Universities of Bamberg and Wurzburg, Germany, and in Padua, Italy with such reknowned professors as Albert Reble, Theodor W. Adorno, Romano Guardini and Guiseppe Flores d’Arcais.

He wrote his first two books on María Montessori and Paul Oestreich, two important figures in the pedagogical activism of this century who were interested in positivism and Marxism, respectively. Böhm’s portrayal of these two figures set the stage for a trait that would long continue in his work: using historical characters as a springboard to introduce his own theories and systematic problems of pedagogy. By criticizing activism, and through historical and comparative studies of the philosophy of education, Winfried Böhm gradually developed his own personalistic pedagogy.

Among his many articles and books are: Gesch. der Päd. und syst. Erziehungswiss. (History of Pedagogy and the Philosophy of Education) [1975], Bildungspolitik und Schulreform in der BRD (Scholarly Politics and School Reform in Germany) [1974, 1984], Die italien. Päd. des. 20 Jh. (Italian Pedagogy in this Century) [1979], Die Päd. der frankophonen Länder im 20. Jh. (Francophone Pedagogy in the 20th Century) [1980], Wer ist der Mensch? (Who is Man?) [1982], La educación de la persona (Education of the Person) [1982], Theorie und Praxis (Theory and Praxis) [1985], Wörterbuch der Pädagogik (The Pedagogical Dictionary) [1982], and ¿Pedagogía masculina-educación femenina? (Masculine Pedagogy-Feminine Education?) [1989, 1993].
Winfried Böhm is presently the Director of the Pedagogical Institute at the University of Wurzburg, Germany.
1. In the conferences you have held in the United States and in Latin America, as well as in your books, you have maintained a pedagogical conception that has awakened great public interest in our Region, perhaps because of your unique and critical vision of diffuse functionalistic concepts. What can you tell us about this?

2. Your vision of the functionalist perspective leads me to ask: To what do you attribute the Latin American interest in personalistic education as we approach the 21st century?

3. How did you personally and epistemologically arrive at the concept of personalism?

4. In your pedagogical thought, how would you rank some of the concerns in Latin America and the Caribbean regarding quality in education or inequalities in educational opportunities?

5. Are your references to Socrates, the French Revolution, Romano Guardini, Flores d’Arcais and Paulo Freire an indication that we need to re-read and re-think the classical authors?

6. With respect  to the fundamental ideas you just mentioned, which do you find most interesting, or are working on, or are planning to develop in your future research?

7. What thought would you like to share with our readers, who are teachers and educators from all educational levels?