Curriculum as an expression of national identity.
Despite claims that the patterns and structures of schooling can be conceived of and determined through an exercise of universally applicable theory, curricula are cultural artifacts. History reveals that the arrangements nations make for the content and patterns of their school curricula are inextricably linked with themes of national identity and national aspirations. In Central Europe and Scandinavia, schools offer an “integrated” model of curriculum that can be traced back to the “pansophic” teachings of Comenius; in Great Britain, schools offer an “alternative” model reflecting its own more pragmatic philosophical tradition; and, in the U.S., the values of Enlightenment republicanism lie behind the “equivalent” model of the traditional high school. It is concluded that, if curriculum theory is to make claims to universality, it must operate at a metalevel from which it can examine broad issues of how the forms of learning are related to the uniqueness of the societies that maintain them and to their cultural evolution.