According to Rousseau, the objective of education is not to make a soldier, magistrate or priest, but to make a man. Explain this idea .

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pohnpei397 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Rousseau believed that people are naturally good and that it is society that is the source of evil.  Therefore, he believes that the point of educaton is to bring out the good person that is at the heart of every human being. This is why education is meant to "make a man" rather than to prepare a person to take up any particular station in life.

Rousseau felt that education had to be concerned with the individual.  Because of this, he wanted a very individualized system of education where the student is allowed basically to learn what they want to learn.  Eventually, they will need to learn something that will allow them to make a living, but this, too, will be something they choose and this phase of the educational process will come only after the person's morals and talents are developed through the early parts of the process.