Gran angular

Libertad de pensamiento para los niños


Dibujo de Liao Wang (China), un niño de 6 años de edad.

"En mi opinión, la mejor manera de respetar esta libertad fundamental, la de pensamiento, consiste en no inculcar a los niños –a una edad en la que están indefensos– respuestas condicionadas (ya sean psicológicas o de otra clase), que sean incapaz de borrar más adelante. Del respeto a esta libertad nace la prohibición de enseñar a los niños una verdad absoluta e incontestable cualquiera, que no sea reconocida como tal por la mayoría de adultos formados. Esto vale tanto para la religión como para la historia", asegura el bioquímico húngaro y premio Nobel de medicina 1937 Albert Szent-Györgyi (1893- 1986) en su respuesta a la encuesta de la UNESCO sobre los fundamentos filosóficos de los derechos humanos. Algunos extractos en inglés. 

Albert Szent-Györgyi

It is, in my opinion, a sign of respect for an absolutely essential freedom not to create in children, at an age when they are defenceless, any conditioned reflex (psychological or otherwise) that they would subsequently be incapable of making disappear.

Respect for this freedom has as a corollary the prohibition against anyone teaching the child anything as an absolute and unquestionable truth that is not recognized as such by the majority of educated adults. This applies to religion as well as history. For example, if most educated adults do not admit that the world was created in seven days, that is an idea that should be erased from the textbooks intended for children and presented only as the opinion of a small group or a folkloric tradition. It is the same for all religious matters (existence and number of gods, etc.).

In the field of history, if at any time a national group devastated another country and if the largest number of educated adults worldwide does not agree that humanity has gained by that particular invasion, then we should not teach children to consider it as an ideal or a claim to fame. That would instill in them imperialism, hatred, and national prejudices.

Albert Szent-Györgyi

Hungarian medical scientist and biochemist, Albert Szent-Györgyi (1893-1986) won the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 1937, for his discovery of  Vitamin C.