, Volume 22, Issue 2, pp 185–194 | Cite as

The new educational pluralism in Latin America

  • José Joaquín Brunner
Open File Pluralistic Education in a Changing World: II. Case-Studies


Education is, however, already beginning to reflect the whole range of pluralisms that constitute the relatively complex, urbanized and semi-industrialized societies of most of Latin America.

Modernity in these societies assumes the form of cultural pluralism with a centrifugal and fragmented social basis, in which deep divisions of class and social strata still exist alongside emerging tensions due to the spread of markets, privatization in civil society, the disintegration of the traditional state, the rapid internationalization of communications and expectations, and the consolidation of liberal-democratic regimes that enable all this diversity to be expressed more freely.

The new pluralism of Latin American education has therefore more to do with the modernization of societies and their cultures than with the more restrictive notion of complementarity among well-structured socio-cultural elements that fight to preserve their identity and that attain a form of expression recognized by the state in the field of education. The latter type of pluralism, found in more stable and better structured societies, is replaced in Latin America by a more fluid and ambiguous educational pluralism which, in the final analysis, reflects a process of construction of modernity that began only recently but is now in full swing.


Civil Society Final Analysis Social Stratum Traditional State Social Basis 
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Copyright information

© UNESCO 1992

Authors and Affiliations

  • José Joaquín Brunner
    • 1
  1. 1.(Chile)

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