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A' S' 니일 연구 : 그의 사상과 서머힐 학교의 교육사적 의의

Title
A' S' 니일 연구 : 그의 사상과 서머힐 학교의 교육사적 의의
Authors
김은산
Issue Date
1976
Department/Major
대학원 교육학과
Publisher
이화여자대학교 대학원
Degree
Doctor
Abstract
A.S. Neill(1883-1973) is one of the most radical educational thinkers of the 20th century. His ideas were so different from and so revolutionary as compared with other’, that they drew an unprecedented controversy among scholars, and even a shock among some parents; is was a rare case in the history of the modern education. This thesis has tried to analyze systemically Neill’s educational thought and Summerhill, his experimental school, and to place his philosophy on the history of progressive education, and to evaluate his ideas both in positive and negative aspects. The paper is composed of seven chapters: the first is the introduction; the second dealt with his basic thought; the third his educational thought; the fourth Summerhill; the fifth the position of his thought in the modern western educational history; the sixth the evaluation of his thought by some 20 scholars and journalists and my comment on them; finally, the seventh is the conclusion which dealt with my assessment on Neill’s thought and educational method and its historical meaning and its suggestions of Korean education. Many prominent scholars have tried to analyze Neill’s system of educational thought in their various ways. However, in my view, his educational philosophy is based on five major points. At first, it should be pointed out that his ideas started from his firm faith in the goodness of child character and in his innate potentialities of self-development, which is of first and of utmost importance in the foundation of his educational thought. He believed that child is born wise and that, if he is bestowed freedom, he could develop himself without any kind of adult’s compulsion. Thus his system of educational philosophy was essentially based on the concept of freedom, which is his second important theoretical foundation. According no Neill, child grows and develops itself most in the atmosphere of freedom. Accordingly, in order to stop the traditional education which he believed repressed and interfered with and controlled children, Neill tried to make school fit to children instead of making children fit to school. To be faithful to his idea, Neill permitted pupils at Summerhill a complete form of freedom including self-government by pupils and staff in operating school and gave them the freedom to learn. The freedom to learn means, on the other hand, the freedom not to learn, if one doesn’t want to, and it means that a child could refuse to enter classroom for days, for weeks, or even for years. Neill also did not preach any dogma or ideology, be it religious, moral, or political. He even gave children the freedom from sexual tension, and boldly broke traditional taboos like masturbation and sexual play. It was from his belief that religion is anti-life that he did not teach any religious education; and it was from his faith that any indoctrination moulds child’s character that he was opposed to political education at Summerhill. However, Neill’s concept of freedom was self-regulation meaning self-control, and differs from license. License, he said interferes with other’s freedom. Neil said that freedom is mutual and that there is no absolute freedom. Neill divided the concept of freedom into two categories: the external one and the internal one. The former means the freedom of action that one may do whatever he wants, unless he does not interfere with other’s freedom; the latter the freedom from fear, hate, hypocrisy, and intolerance. Aside from two main concepts of the goodness of child nature and of freedom in education, the third important foundation of Neill’s educational philosophy is his view on the unconscious. He thought that human behavior is determined by the unconscious rather than by the conscious. Therefore, he believed that the emotional education which attaches importance to the unconscious is more vital than the intellectual one which attaches greater importance to head. Neill regarded happiness as the ultimate goal of life, as well as of education, which is the fourth theoretical foundation of his thought. Happiness, in his view, is the internal feeling of well-being, a sense of balance, and satisfaction of life. Neill believed, moreover, that the only way to happiness is freedom. Neill claimed at the same time that human beings live amidst the continuing threat of war full of hatred because they keep the social conscience primitive by ignoring and repressing their emotions, and by leaving them in unconscious state. Then Neill thought the only hope to save the mad world is neither learning, nor religion, but freedom. He believed that Christianity is old, just as old enough to die as so many other dead religions once have been. His view on religion is from his historical view on human civilization. Accordingly, he did not hope for a religious salvation of the present world but hoped to save it by reforming the human beings through free education. In my view, the fifth and the most unique point in Neill’s educational philosophy is his concept of love. Originally he depended upon private lesson, a psychoanalytical way of his own, for curing of problem child. However, at Summerhill he soon found out that a child who refused psychological treatment was recovered at last as a good, normal child just as the child treated in psychoanalytical way. Then he recognized that what cured the child was not his psychological treatment but the free atmosphere, love, and understanding given to children at Summerhill. Consequently, he concluded that only love can save a problem child. However, what Neill meant by love is by no means a sentimental or possessive one, as generally conceived. It is by his own words, to be on the side of children and to approve them. Neill maintained that the duty of teacher is neither to pour anything to children, nor to try to derive anything from them, but to give something to them. He named it as love. Neill thought that hate breeds hate and love breeds love, and he used his unique way of curing child’s kleptomania by giving money as a reward each time he stole something. In these ways, Neill at Summerhill cured problem children, and before everything, concentrated efforts on preventing children from becoming problematical by social method of democratic self-government at the school and psychological method of private lessons. This is why Neill proudly called his Summerhill ‘the happiest school in the world” Neill practiced on one hand his educational ideas by operating Summerhill and, on the other, wrote a number of he books, and contributed numerous articles to newspapers to express his view to the public. His books totaled 19 volumes; and they are so humorous, plain, and possess so much insights that they have become extremely popular even among general readers. His major book, Summerhill: A Radical Approach to Child Rearing, published first in 1960, has been translated into more than ten foreign languages, and become a bestseller in the United States and West Germany from the late 1960’s to the early 1970’s. Neill, who was a lonely man faithful only to his ideal, slowly became a world famous figure enjoying an explosive popularity, and won two honorary degrees in England where he was initially received rather coldly. His rising popularity was followed by a renewed controversy on his educational ideas, in a more heated form now among scholars. Some called Neill one of the greatest educational reformers of the 20th century who has brought light to the world. Some praised his book, Summerhill, as a holy book, and his school as a holy place. On the other side, some have called him a disciple of Rousseau or a utopian dreamer, and Summerhill as an educational caricature. A few bitter opponents have even condemned Neill as an educational quack or an educational prostitute, and his school as an educational brothel. The shock to some parents was aseptically great mainly because Neill had claimed that the freedom of not to learn should be offered children, and that there was no problem child but only a problem family, and that the freedom from sexual repression in childhood might lead to a healthy sexual life in adulthood. By and large, the main points of controversy focused on his view on child, freedom and religion, and his emphasis on emotional education. Those who agree in principle with Neill have pointed out that his educational philosophy is life-loving and that his ideas have given a new hope for education in this sick world; those who criticize him claim that his view on child is anachronism and that his view on freedom is self-contradictory, and that his negligence of intellectual education is anti-intellectualism and hedonism. In my view, this kind of academic dispute might easily become unproductive if sufficient attention be not paid, because main questions involved in the controversy are closely related with one of the most fundamental, even eternal, problems of human beings raised from the very beginning of history of mankind. For example, the question of the nature of human beings, to which no satisfactory answer has yet been given, remains to be clarified. Whether one likes Neill or not, one should carefully assess both strong and weak points of his educational philosophy. In any case such assessment should be constructive so that one could obtain useful lessons from Neill. What I highly appreciate about Neill can be summarized in seven points: his indefatigable educational experiment over a half century, his life-loving philosophy, his firm support of freedom and happiness of the individual in the relation between the individual and the whole, his own discovery of child’s original nature and demand, his emphasis on emotional education, his distinguished literary talent, and his future-oriented, optimistic, and humble character as a thinker and as a teacher. What must be pointed out as his weakness are his too simple and naive and one-sided view on unhappiness of human beings and on war, his over-emphasis on the importance of sex in life his tendency of negligence of teaching method, his bias an parents, his ambiguous definition of the difference between freedom and license. However, I like to make it clear that what is important is, as someone said, not the rights or wrongs of Neill’s ideas but that his humble search for human freedom, happiness and growth was undertaken by him and that his philosophy has an everlasting meaning for the future of mankind in this world of danger. Anyway, I agree with the opinion that to take an arbitrary stand for or against Neill would be the height of folly. Finally, it should be pointed out that Neill’s educational philosophy can be a most valuable suggestion for education in Korea where prevails a phenomenon of dehumanizing influences such as powerism, a view that holds power to be supreme, or mammonism, the view that money is everything. One should raise the serious question of what education means for in this country. Neill’s philosophy can be highly useful to re-examine the strongly traditional educational problems such as our knowledge-centered education and cramming of lessons or our views on children and teacher. ; A.S 니일(1883-1973)은 20世紀의 進步的 敎育思想家들 중에서도 가장 急進的인 思想家의 하나이다. 그의 思想은 다른 進步的 思想家들에게서는 찾아볼 수 없는 獨特하고 革命的인 것이었기 때문에 學者들 사이에서는 激烈한 論爭을 불러일으켰고 一般父母들에게는 衝擊을 던져주었다. 이러한 例는 近代敎育史上 일찍이 前例없던 稀貴한 일이었다. 스코틀랜드의 嚴格한 淸敎徒의 敎育者 家庭에 태어나 그는 일찍이 호우머 레인과 빌헬름 라이히 같은 프로이드派 精神分析學者들로부터 많은 影響을 받았다. 또 버어나드 쇼우와 H.G.웰즈등으로 부터도 깊은 影響을 받아 그들과 같은 文明批判的 姿勢와 社會意識 그리고 宗敎觀을 갖게되어 당시의 權威主義的 敎育에 反對, 徹底한 自由敎育을 主唱했다. 니일은 1921年 그의 實驗學校 서머힐을 세워 1973年 90歲를 一期로 作故하기 까지 50餘年 동안 그의 敎育思想을 實踐에 옮겼는데 그의 死後에도 서머힐은 그의 未亡人에 의해 運營되고 있다. 서머힐은 創設以後 現在까지 니일의 敎育思想에 立脚하여 敎育이 실시되고 있으며 그의 基本方針은 創設당시나 現在나 根本的으로 변화된 것이 없다. 니일의 敎育哲學은 어린이의 善性과 生來的 發展可能性에 대한 그의 確信에서 出發했다. 니일은 어린이는 태어날때부터 賢明하여 自由가 주어지면 自記發展할 수 있는 生來的인 潛在力을 지니고 있다고 믿었다. 니일의 敎育思想體系는 이 때문에 自由의 槪念을 가장 基本的인 原理로 삼고있다. 그에 의하면 抑壓이나 干涉이나 統制대신 어린이에게 自由를 許容하면 어린이는 타고난 才能이 發展할수 있는 最大限度에까지 成長하고 發展한다는 것이다. 따라서 니일은 從來 學校에서 實施하던 抑壓과 干涉을 아동들에게 주는 敎育方式을 脫皮하기 위해 어린이들은 學校에 맞추는 대신, 學校를 어린이들에게 맞도록 만들기로 했다. 이러한 그의 思想에 따라 니일은 서머힐에서 어린이들에게 徹底한 自由를 許容했다. 그 具體的 內容은 生徒와 敎職員들에 의한 學校의 自治, 어린이의 學習의 自由 즉 生徒가 授業時間에 出席하느냐 안하느냐의 與否는 生徒들의 各自思想에 맡기고 生徒가 공부하기를 싫어한다면 며칠, 몇 週日, 몇 年이라도 놀 수 있는 自由까지를 許容했다. 그는 또 宗敎·道德·政治등 어떠한 敎理나 思想의 注入도 하지 않았다. 그는 심지어 生徒들에게 性的 緊張으로 부터의 自由도 許容하여 自慰行爲, 理性交際등 傳統的敎育에서 禁止하던 모든 타부를 大膽하게 打破했다. 니일이 宗敎敎育, 道德敎育을 排擊하고 實施하지 않은 것은 宗敎는 生否定的이고 道德敎育은 사람의 性格을 어떤 틀 안에 집어넣는다고 믿었기 때문이었다. 그러나 니일이 主唱한 自由는 自記統制를 意味하는 自律로서 放縱과는 區別된다. 그에 의하면 放縱은 남의 自由를 妨害하는 行爲이다. 그는 自由는 어디까지나 相互的이어야 하며 絶對的인 自由는 存在하지 않는다고 말했다. 니일은 이 때문에 自由의 槪念을 두 가지로 나누어 外的인 自由와 內的인 自由로 區分했다. 前者는 남의 自由를 妨害하지 않는 限 무엇이든지 自己가 하고 싶은 대로 할 수 있는 行動의 自由를 意味하며 後者는 一切의 恐怖와 憎惡와 僞善과 不寬容으로부터의 自由를 意味했다. 어린이의 善性과 自由라는 두가지 核心的인 槪念 이외에 니일의 敎育哲學의 基礎가 되는 다른 하나의 原理는 그의 無意識에 대한 見解이다. 그는 人間의 行動이 意識에 의해서가 아니라 無意識에 의해서 左右된다고 생각한다. 니일은 따라서 敎育은 從來와 같이 頭腦만을 重視하는 知的敎育이 아니라 無意識을 重視하는 感情敎育에 注力해야 한다고 主張하게 된 것이다. 니일은 또한 人生의 窮極的인 目的은 幸福이라고 보았다. 그에 의하면 이 幸福은 敎育의 目標이기도 하다. 幸福이란 安寧의 內的感情, 均衡感, 生의 滿足感의 狀態라고 니일은 解釋했다. 그리고 니일은 幸福을 얻는 길도 自由뿐이라고 斷言했다. 그는 또한 現代社會를 病든 社會라고 말하고 人類가 끊임없이 憎惡에 찬 戰爭의 威脅속에서 살고 있는 理由도 人間이 그들의 感情을 無視하고 抑壓하여 너무나 無意識的인채로 放置해 옴으로써 世界의 社會的 良心이 原始狀態에 머물러 있도록 했기 때문이라고 주장했다. 따라서 니일은 狂的인 現代의 世界를 救할 수 있는 唯一한 希望은 學問도 宗敎도 아닌 自由뿐이라고 主張했다. 니일의 宗敎觀은 文化史的인 立場의 것으로, 基督敎는 이미 낡은 宗敎로서 消滅할 때가 됐다고 주장했다. 이 때문에 그의 世界의 宗敎的 救援을 排擊하고 自由로운 敎育을 통한 人間의 改選야말로 世界를 救援하는 길이라고 主張했다. 니일의 敎育思想에 있어서 또 하나의 重要한 原理는 사랑의 槪念이다. 그는 처음 問題兒의 治療를 個人指導라는 精神分析學的 方法에 의존했다. 그러나 자기 學校에서 心理治療를 받기를 拒否해 온 問題兒도 얼마 후에는 心理治療를 받은 아이와 마찬가지로 善良한 아이로 回復되는 것을 보았다. 따라서 問題兒들을 낮게하는 것은 자기의 心理治療가 아니라 서머힐의 自由로운 분위기와 그들에게 주어지는 사랑과 理解임을 깨달았다. 그래서 니일은 問題兒를 救하는 길은 사랑밖에 없다는 結論을 얻었다. 그가 말하는 사랑은 일반적으로 쓰이는 感情的인 意味의 사랑이 아니라, 相對方을 認定해 주는 것, 相對의 便이 되어 주는 것 卽 認定을 意味했다. 그에 의하면 敎師의 任務는 아이들에게 무엇인가를 注入시키는 것이 아니고, 아이들로부터 무엇인지를 끌어 내 주는 것도 아니며 오직 주는 것인데 그것은 사랑이라고 말했다. 憎惡는 憎惡를 키우고 사랑은 사랑을 키운다고 생각한 그는 이러한 사랑을 不良兒로 하여금 느끼게 하는 方法으로 도둑질을 한 아이에게 훔칠 적마다 賞金을 줌으로써 오히려 盜癖을 고치고 善良한 少年이 되게 하는 特異한 方法도 썼다. 이와 같이 나일은 서머힐 學校를 民主的 自治라는 社會的라는 心理的 方法과 個人指導라는 心理的 方法을 통해 自由와 사랑으로 問題兒를 正常兒로 回復시켰을 뿐만 아니라 問題兒를 만들지 않도록 했다. 그는 서머힐을 “世界에서 가장 幸福한 學校”라고 말했다. 니일은 서머힐을 運營하면서 그의 敎育史思想을 實踐해 옮기는 한편 꾸준히 著書를 내고 新聞에도 寄稿하여 그의 思想을 披瀝했는데 그의 著作은 單行本만도 19卷에 達한다. 그의 著作들은 學問的인 理論書가 아니라 그의 經驗과 直觀力을 基礎로 한 平易하고 유우머러스한 內容이었기 때문에 一般에게서 愛讀되는 책이 됐다. 1960年에 출판된 그의 主著 서머히은 世界 10餘個 國語로 飜譯됐고, 1960年代 末에서 1970年代 初 사이에는 美國과 西獨에서 베스트셀러가 되어 旋風的인 人氣를 모았다. 孤獨한 敎育家였던 니일은 이때부터 一躍 世界的인 脚光을 받기 始作하여 晩年에는 2個의 名譽學位를 받았으며 世界各處로부터 서머힐 學校를 參觀하러오는 사람들만도 年間2千餘名에 達했다. 이처럼 그의 思想과 敎育實驗이 世界的인 關心의 對象이 되면서 그에 대한 論難은 새롭게 일기 시작했다. 어떤 學者는 니일이 20世紀의 가장 偉大한 進步的 敎育思想家라고 評價하는가 하면 어떤이는 그의 著書 「서머힐」이 “聖스러운 책”이며 서머힐學校는 “聖스러운 場所”라고 까지 높이 讚揚했다. 이와 反對로 니일을 批判하는 사람들은 그가 루소의 亞流이고 유우토피아的 夢想家이며 그의 敎育理論은 프로이드 學說을 잘못 理解한 데서 비롯된 誤謬라고 主張했다. 니일을 激烈하게 非難한 어떤 사람은 니일를 “敎育돌파리醫師”이며 “敎育賣春業者”이고 서머힐學校는 “戱畵”이고 “賣春窟”이라고까지 酷評했다. 또한 니일이 어린이의 공부하지 않을 自由를 주장한 점, 問題의 家庭은 있어도 問題兒는 없다고 말한 점, 어린이의 性的 抑制로부터의 自由가 장래의 性生活을 위해 有益하다고한 점등 從來의 傳統的 敎育에 果敢하게 挑戰한 것은 一般父母들에게는 하나의 新鮮한 衝擊이 아닐 수 없었다. 大體로 니일에 대한 論點은 그의 兒童觀과 自由觀 즉 學習의 自由 그리고 宗敎觀등에 集中됐다. 니일의 敎育思想을 肯定的으로 評價하는 立場에서는 니일의 思想은 “愛生的”이며 “人間을 위한 敎育”이라는 점을 强調했고, 이를 批判하는 立場에서는 그의 兒童觀은 時代錯誤的이며, 自由觀은 유우토피아的일 뿐 아니라 自家撞着的이라는 것이고 知的敎育을 輕視한 점은 反知性的이며 快樂主義的이라고 强調했다. 그러나 이러한 論爭은 事實上 人間의 歷史가 시작된 이래 줄곧 계속 되어 온 人間의 基本問題에 直結된다. 例컨대 니일이 말한대로 어린이의 善性에 관한 問題는 어쩌면 永遠히 논쟁이 계속될 問題이다. 따라서 이러한 人間의 基本的인 問題에 대해 筆者는 留保的인 立場을 取하면서도 重要한 것은 니일의 敎育思想의 어디가 옳고 그르냐는 것이 아니고 그의 思想이 生肯定的인 思想이었다는 점에서 오늘날과 같은 生否定的인 危機의 時代에 永遠不變의 意義를 지닌 것으로 評價하고자 한다. 니일의 이러한 교육사상은 오늘날과 같이 權力至上, 黃金萬能등 非人間化의 風潮가 支配하고 있는 韓國에 있어서 敎育이 무엇을 위한 것인가를 再檢討하는데 큰 示唆가 될 것이다. 이와 아울러 韓國의 傳統的 敎育觀 즉 知識中心敎育과 注入式敎育에 對한 再考와 兒童觀과 敎師觀의 再定立을 위해 重要한 參考的 意義를 갖는다고 筆者는 생각한다.
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