Sunday, October 12, 2008

CCK08: Gemeinschaft vs. Gesellschaft

This week made me think about Sergiovanni´s distinction between Gemeinschaft (community) vs. Gesellschaft (society) as ideal extremes and Rothstein-Fisch and Trumbell´s treatment of dealing with diverse classrooms through an individualism/collectivism dichotomy.  The latter, I believe, parallels more with George´s definition of connectives in that individual efforts and identity are not compromised for the sake of the group´s goals and objectives.  Rothstein-Fisch and Trumbell´s deal with how "individualistic" attributes of US culture are different than the rest of the world, seen more as a collectivist culture.  They go on to explain how teachers can account for these differences and thus take advantage of them in creating more of a dynamic and productive learning experience.  The main difference between these two perspectives is that Sergiovanni speaks to participants as a whole in shifting the paradigm while Rothstein-Fisch and Trumbell deal more with accepting and working with the dichotomy in a practical sense (less about actually trying to shift the paradigm).