A canonical view in psychology and education at mid-century Both the passage of time and the exigencies of argument can conspire to yield a past that appears appealingly simple. Succumbing to those pressures, one can readily compose views of the child and of education that are optimistic in tone and in harmony with one another. While scarcely going unchallenged, such views associated with an earlier time have done much to frame current discussions of the nature of childhood and the preferred course of education.