The BBF portal provides online editions of selected historical texts on education. The texts have been processed according to the guidelines issued by the Text Encoding Initiative (TEI), assuring long-term availability.

Complete Edition of Letters by Friedrich Fröbel

Friedrich Fröbel (1782–1852) is known as the founder of kindergartens and he is without doubt a classical figure in pedagogy, part of his legacy, known Berlin Legacy, lies in the BBF Archive.

The German Research Foundation (DFG) has funded a project for the edition comprising not only the letters at the BBF, but all 1800 known letters written by Fröbel. The edition aimed to inspiring and promoting research by making new, in many cases unknown sources accessible. While many collections of correspondences were already published in the past, they are in many cases incomplete and do not live up to editing standards.

This edition of the complete letters was edited by Professor Dr. Helmut Heiland (Fröbel Research Unit at the University of Duisburg-Essen) and the BBF. It sheds light on Fröbel‘s life in many details and offers deeper insights into his work. Owing to Fröbel’s general tendency to integrate autobiographical elements in his letters, his self-image is portrayed and relevant nuances are revealed.The entire corpus of letters provides a substantial source for research into Fröbel‘s pedagogy and it complements his published work respectively his edited work particularly regarding the periods of his life when he published little or not at all.

Online-edition of Fröbel's Letters

Correspondence Between Eduard Spranger and Käthe Hadlich

Eduard Spranger (1882–1963) was a philosopher, pedagogue and psychologist. He played a crucial role in the establishment of pedagogy as an academic discipline in its own right and he influenced teacher education in Germany. He is known to be one of the most distinctive representatives of humanities-oriented pedagogy (Geisteswissenschaftliche Pädagogik) and he had a sustained impact on pedagogical discussion in the first half of the 20th century.

Spranger considered written communication to be a central element of his lifestyle. Käthe Hadlich (1872–1960) was one of his most important partners in correspondence. Nearly all of the topics and lifespheres relevant to Spranger are mentioned in their correspondence. Because of its scope and details, the correspondence can be seen as a kind of diary. It represents the central medium of Spranger’s self-reflection, which he himself considered to be fundamental to his scientific work.

More than 4,500 letters and postcards from the correspondence between Spranger and Hadlich have survived, spanning the years 1903 to 1960. The German Research Foundation (DFG) funded a research project to transcribe the correspondence, chaired by Professor Dr. Werner Sacher (Friedrich-Alexander University Erlangen-Nuremberg). Subject to further funding from the DFG, the entire correspondence was processed pursuant to the Text Encoding Initiative (TEI) directives and made available in an openly accessible online edition. The edition was edited by Professor Dr. Karin Priem (University of Luxembourg) and Professor Dr. Klaus-Peter Horn (Georg-August-University of Göttingen) as well as the BBF.

Online-edition of the Spranger-Hadlich-Corresponence