Most historical scholarship on John Dewey’s 1924 educational mission to Turkey has focused on the degree to which the educator and philosopher’s recommendations were actually implemented. By bringing the disciplinary lenses of history and philosophy to bear on Dewey’s mission, this collaborative study differs from previous work by illuminating the disjuncture between Dewey’s conception of democratic localism as essential to an educational system in a vibrant democracy (a social ideal) and Turkish officials’ view of centralized, formal education as a means to promulgate a homogeneous, modern, secular and democratic identity for their new nation-state (a political goal).

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