Janush Korczak’s Life and Legacy for Jewish Education

Chapter
Part of the International Handbooks of Religion and Education book series (IHRE, volume 5)

Abstract

Janush Korczak (1878, Warsaw–1942, Treblinka) was well known for his heroic stand of nonviolent opposition to the Nazis’ deportation of all of Warsaw’s Jews to the death camp of Treblinka and was one of the outstanding humanist educators of the twentieth century. In this chapter I present four major features of Korczak’s legacy strongly relevant to Jewish and general education today. These features are (1) the central role of “implicit religion” in Korczak’s search for the meaning of life; (2) Korczak’s indefatigable efforts to “humanize” the world; (3) Korczak’s facilitation of the growth of children enabled to realize relationships that integrate justice-seeking with care-lending ethics; and (4) Korczak’s existential struggle with the meaning(s) of his Jewishness, which is a generative story of Jewish identity in the twentieth century, since Korczak was a “born assimilated” Jew whose Polishness was natural to him. These features are deeply connected to the concerns of religious, civic, moral, and cultural education.

Keywords

Moral Education Jewish Identity Civic Education Polish Society Educational Work 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Hebrew UniversityJerusalemIsrael

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