the formation, through labor, of the moral qualities necessary for productive activity in society. In a socialist society, labor training signifies, in the broadest sense, the inculcation of a communist attitude toward labor as the basis of a new spiritual makeup of man and the upbringing of a highly conscientious and comprehensively developed citizenry; labor training is thus an organic part of communist education. In a narrower sense, it is a purposeful process, closely linked with instruction in school, of preparing young people for work in society.
A communist attitude toward labor results from an upbringing that instills industriousness, that prepares a person to perform socially useful work, and that teaches a person to be responsible for his work, to apprehend the interest of the collective as his own, and to address himself to his tasks in a conscientious and creative fashion. The foundation and objective prerequisites for attaining the goals of labor training in a socialist society are socialist production relations, a correspondence between the goals sought in building communism and the basic interests of the working people, and a continuous improvement in the material well-being and cultural level of the people.
Labor training is practiced in a number of ways, among them by preparing children to perform work at home and in school, by involving young people directly, to the extent their abilities permit, in social production, by honoring and extolling the peredoviki (exemplary workers) and disseminating their contributions, and by consistently adhering to the use of material incentives in production. It is also fostered by creating the conditions necessary for a rise in the level of skills and an increase in worker participation in the organization and management of production, by employing socialist emulation on a wide scale, and by disseminating information bearing on labor training by individual or mass communication. Labor training entails a resolute struggle against antisocial attitudes toward labor through social and administrative action, criticism, and the use of coercive measures against violators of Soviet labor laws. The party seeks to increase the effectiveness of the ideological activity through a comprehensive approach to upbringing, that is, an approach unifying ideological, political, labor, and moral upbringing while taking into consideration the special characteristics of various groups of working people.
In a society beset by class antagonisms, labor training is geared toward the absolute subordination of the working people to the ruling classes, the strengthening of the existing social order, and the bringing up of submissive and diligent toilers.
Pedagogy regards labor training as an organic part of the educational process in the home and school. In bourgeois pedagogy, following G. Kerschensteiner and J. Dewey, labor training has been regarded solely as the principal means of training disciplined, meticulous, and conscientious workers, striving exclusively to attain personal success and material well-being. Objectively speaking, such a definition of the goals of labor training in bourgeois pedagogy serves to conceal class contradictions and to underpin a state beset by antagonisms.
Utopian socialists from the 16th through the 18th century were the first to expound the idea of labor training as a means of forming free, harmoniously developed individuals who would work for the well-being of all members of society. In Utopia, T. More proclaimed the socialist ideal of a society without exploiters; all members would perform labor, which they would be taught from childhood in schools, in the fields, and in workshops. T. Campanella regarded the combination of academic instruction with labor as the most important feature of education. J.-J. Rousseau proposed drawing children into agriculture and various crafts, asserting that the mastery of a trade would ensure material independence. The 19th-century Utopian socialists Saint-Simon and Fourier held that education should prepare the younger generation for productive work in society and provide for the all-around development of young people. Fourier worked out methods in particularly great detail for involving children in labor. In the schools organized by R. Owen, children were drawn into group labor at an early age.
Significant contributions to the theory of labor training were made by Russian revolutionary democrats. N. G. Chernyshevskii refined the notion that under communism labor would be transformed into the prime human need, the satisfaction of which would bring genuine pleasure. The pedagogue K. D. Ushinskii, author of Labor in Its Psychological and Educational Importance (1860), disclosed the importance of physical labor—of a type chosen by the individual—in a person’s all-around development and feeling of self-respect.
K. Marx, F. Engels, and V. I. Lenin saw labor training focusing primarily on the combination of academic instruction with productive labor. Lenin wrote that “an ideal future society cannot be conceived without the combination of education with the productive labor of the younger generation: neither training and education without productive labor, nor productive labor without parallel training and education could be raised to the degree required by the present level of technology and the state of scientific knowledge” (Poln. sobr. soch., 5th ed., vol. 2, p. 485).
Vocational guidance and the inculcation of students with a willingness to work are ensured in the USSR by the entire system of the curricular and extracurricular work of the secondary general-education school, including the subjects taught, the levels of the labor loads imposed, and the methods of instruction that guarantee a high degree of activity among the students. Labor training is carried out not only during programs of study in the humanities, natural sciences, and mathematics but also in the voluntary execution of the assignments prescribed by Pioneer and Komsomol organizations, which teach their members the social value of collective, conscientious, and disciplined labor.
The participation of students in social production alongside adults figures prominently in labor training; this experience acquaints young people with production relations and duties and permits them to both display and develop their physical, mental, and moral faculties. With this goal in mind, work is organized for students in training shops and student production combines; there are also student production brigades, forestry groups, and camps for physical labor and recreation. Combining academic instruction with work experience provides opportunities for applying theoretical knowledge to practical situations; it also develops the capacity to address one’s labor tasks in an independent, creative fashion and imparts qualities of character of great importance in a socialist society.
Labor training is also practiced in a systematic fashion in vocational-technical, specialized secondary, and higher educational institutions. Here the training is closely related to the student’s area of specialization. The training is provided by the formal programs of study (lectures, laboratory and field assignments), by practicums and production training, and by socially useful work in student construction detachments and other labor associations. In the labor training of working youths, an important role is played by the schools and brigades of communist labor and by the tutorial system, which is now widespread; here, highly skilled, experienced workers provide occupational training to the rising generation of workers and oversee their communist upbringing. The inculcation of a communist attitude toward labor is one of the most important tasks of Komsomol and other social and public organizations carrying out educational work with young people employed at industrial enterprises and institutions, sovkhozes, and kolkhozes.
In the USSR, problems of labor training are worked out in the scientific research institutions of the Academy of Pedagogical Sciences of the USSR, in scientific research institutes of the Union republics, and in pedagogical institutes.
In law, the term “labor training” is understood as a means of correcting convicts by involving them in labor at correctional institutions.
REFERENCESMarx, K., and F. Engels. O vospitanii i obrazovanii. Moscow, 1957.
Lenin, V. I. O vospitanii i obrazovanii, 3rd ed. Moscow, 1973.
Kalinin, M. I. O vospitanii i obuchenii. Moscow, 1957.
Krupskaia, N. K. Fed. soch., vol. 4. Moscow, 1959.
Shatskii, T. S. Izbr. ped. soch. Moscow, 1958.
Makarenko, A. S. Soch., vol. 5. Moscow, 1958.
Obshchie osnovy pedagogiki. Edited by F. F. Korolev and V. E. Gmurman. Moscow, 1967.
Sukhomlinskii, V. A. Vospitanie kommunisticheskogo otnosheniia k trudu. Moscow, 1959.
V. G. ZUBOV