The author reconstructs the Romantic concept of imagination, drawing attention to its relations with the esoteric tradition, and then presents the significance of the idea of imagination for pedagogical reflection in the period of Romanticism. What is also undertaken is the motif of the continuity of Romantic ideas in the 20th century, with special regard to the 20th century youth counterculture and the relations between the countercultural concept of imagination and the discourse on education.
In the text, a polemic is undertaken against the model of the child expected in Polish institutions of early childhood education, and which appropriates the rationalities producing social practices. The source of this model is in the logic of standardization whose cognitive and effects on identity are criticized by the author. Identifying the sources of validation of the practices normalizing some children and stigmatizing others, who do not meet the requirements of the cognitively rigid and morally trivialized standards, the text points to developmental psychology as a discipline which potentially triggers this form of oppression. In conclusion, the author describes briefly a number of examples of educational solutions in which an attempt has been made to move beyond the discourse of standardized quality in child education.
The motto of the article signals that ‘the great cultural change’ on the turn of the 20th century is going to be the context for reflections on the identity of pedagogy. The problem of identity has always been controversial; however, it is particularly visible in the circumstances of change. In the article I attempt to weaken the argumentation used by the advocates of marginalising that problem in an academic discourse in order to remind statements of leaders of Polish pedagogy encouraging undertaking the problems of the identity of pedagogy. I also try to convince the reader that it is possible to form important questions about the new connection between pedagogy and educational practice in the context of a discourse about the identity of pedagogy.