INTERCULTURAL EDUCATION – A ROMANIAN SCHOOL NECESSITY?
Vocational School for Nurses, Piatra-Neamţ, Romania
Secondary School No. 11, Piatra-Neamţ, Romania
Motto: “We are surrounded by differences. We look different, we live in different countries, speak different languages, communicate differently, we think differently, we have different opinions, express ourselves differently. How do we explain what diversity actually is? The term hardly seems complicated on a simple analysis, but one may be surprised. Diversity does not relate only to the differences among us. Diversity has always been accompanied by respect, acceptance and understanding of these differences. And these differences can be of varied extent. We belong to different races, ethnicity, gender, religion or socio-economic status, as well as age. Diversity also involves exploration of these differences in a safe environment favourable to us all. Furthermore, diversity is not mere recognition, acceptance and tolerance of differences, but exceeds all these assuming adoption and enjoyment of its rich dimensions found in each of us.” (Goraş-Postică Viorica, ed. 2015: 16).
In the current European and international socio-cultural context, when people talk more often about integration, globalisation, coexistence and acceptance of others, we wonder if the Romanian school has the necessary means to form moral characters based on the notions mentioned above.
We cannot overlook the fact that the creative power and originality of a culture does not consist of pure ethnic or religious elements, which would involve intolerance and exclusivism, but in the ability to assimilate and accept the real beneficial archetypal creative sources. In such a multicultural and intercultural context, various ethnic, cultural and religious communities express their specificity in common.
Romanian people knew how to accept and to live their historical and geographical destiny, being influenced by two types of civilisations: the western one and the eastern one, so that Romanian civilization built an early original life style and culture, being the only European Romanesque nation that kept the Orthodox Christian faith.
If today being European means sharing European values on the world with universal meanings from particular experiences, we can easily see that this cultural model has no geographic boundaries, being shared by countries such as Japan, Australia or Canada.
The issue of education in Romanian schools today is the reverberation in the educational field of contemporary world issues, which are peculiar universality, globalization, rapid and unpredictable development in society, multidisciplinary nature, ingenuity and promptness in solving complex situations, etc.
Defined in terms of process, education and training create a real, intentional, positive and long-term transformation of a human being, from the perspective of an explicitly formulated finality developed at the macro structure of human society.
Education must be seen according to the following aspects: preparing students for opening to the intercultural dimension, developing the ability to recognize diversity and how it manifests itself, respect cultural differences, cooperate with people belonging to different cultures, ethnicities, races, religions, social groups, professional groups etc. and developing intercultural skills to live together.
We wonder if we can tackle the issue of interculturalism from a Christian perspective. Like all great religions (Judaism, Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism), which shape the universal culture of mankind, Christianity defined itself by historical influence, originality and depth of the message and the large number of followers. As an expression of interculturalism, Christianity must be followed from its appearance and development to its present assertion. Watching its evolution and social, spiritual and cultural implications, we conclude that Christianity has a real contribution in forming and shaping consciences in the spirit of equality, brotherhood, fellows’ acceptance, etc.
Being aware to a greater or lesser extent of this phenomenon in the postmodern context, intercultural competence is imposed by necessity and topical interest for citizens of each country in Europe. The integration of all modalities that society has in order to educate youth will lead to the preparation of human personality for the self, the real involvement and capacity to decide from a spiritual point of view, availability of communication, civilised interaction and cooperation to resolve common problems.
Key words: Intercultural; Education; Society; Globalisation; Diversity.
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How to cite this article: Floroaia, M. & Floroaia, A.-M. (2016). Intercultural education – a Romanian school necessity?. Journal of Linguistic and Intercultural Education – JoLIE, 9(3), 45-58. DOI:
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