Recent debates on the place of the arts in American life has refocused attention on art education in schools. In this book, the author puts current debate and concerns in a well-researched historical perspective. He examines the institutional settings of art education throughout Western history, the social forces that have shaped it and the evolution and impact of alternate streams of influence on present practice. The book treats the visual arts in relation to developments in general education and particular emphasis is placed on the 19th and 20th centuries and on the social context that has affected our concept of art today. The book is intended as a main text in history of art education courses, as a supplemental text in courses in art education methods and history of education, and as a resource for students, professors and researchers.