Andor Maróti was among the few academics who established university education for adult educators in Hungary in the 1960s. Before then, the modern concept of adult educator had been an unknown profession in the country. All types of work in the field of popular education or in community education had been carried out by school teachers or untrained people who were unprepared, except in those subjects for which they had been trained in traditional teacher training. Maróti and a small group of scholars developed a new concept, curriculum, and the literature dealing with the profession of adult education. They successfully lobbied to get recognition.
Maróti’s main interests have been the theory and philosophy of culture. He has published dozens of textbooks and studies in the field as well as delivering a series of lectures. Interpretation of culture in Hungary has always been strongly allied with art, and his contributions helped to develop a more modern, broad anthropological concept of culture.
Maróti has contributed to the recognition of the profession of adult education through the creation of tertiary level teaching for such a field. His efforts forged a new development in the field of adult and continuing education in Hungary. Colleges and universities began training adult educators and the specialization became very popular among young people. While the field initially remained dominated by the theory of Marxism-Leninism, a number of new elements emerged for this civilian profession that required specific academic knowledge and expertise. The profession proved to be a success in the majority of community houses, libraries, local newspapers, museums, galleries, and other venues. It flourished as a new career and Hungary has grown much closer to the standard European system of education and training including adult and continuing education.
After his retirement, Maróti continued to carry out lectures for another 13 years on the theory and methodology of adult education and philosophy of culture. He was a regular participant at the international conferences on the History of Adult Education in the Central European countries. He was the member of the Hungarian delegation at the 5th UNESCO World Congress in Hamburg and has been a member of the International Society for Comparative Adult Education, the Subcommittee for Adult Education in the Hungarian Scientific Academy, as well as the honorary president of the Association for the Development of Adult Education.
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