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What can be achieved through education at all? A response to Julian Culp


Geiss, Michael (2020). What can be achieved through education at all? A response to Julian Culp. Ethics & Global Politics, 13(3):147-154.

Abstract

In the following I would like to expose Julian Culp’s normative argumentation to some empirical considerations. My commentary focuses on one of the central premises of the book: Culp assumes that education can make a decisive contribution to solving the current challenges in plural and globalized societies. He states that recent political philosophy has unacceptably neglected the issue of education. But the book’s aim is not the theoretical determina-tion of education itself. Rather, Culp is concerned with the ques-tion of giving education the right normative foundation to solve the social, ecological and democratic challenges the globalized world is currently facing. I don’t think that one can or should discuss and analyse education without normative considerations. Educational thinking cannot do without a normative foundation and it is helpful and necessary to reflect upon them philosophi-cally. This is the central concern of the book, and there is nothing to be added to it by historians or educational researchers. But a purely normative approach runs the risk of repeating many of the problems inherent in educational thinking. I think that even a normative approach would gain a lot from taking the empirical and historical boundaries of its subject more seriously than Culp does. Therefore, most of my remarks are about the relationship between normative theory and historical realities.

Abstract

In the following I would like to expose Julian Culp’s normative argumentation to some empirical considerations. My commentary focuses on one of the central premises of the book: Culp assumes that education can make a decisive contribution to solving the current challenges in plural and globalized societies. He states that recent political philosophy has unacceptably neglected the issue of education. But the book’s aim is not the theoretical determina-tion of education itself. Rather, Culp is concerned with the ques-tion of giving education the right normative foundation to solve the social, ecological and democratic challenges the globalized world is currently facing. I don’t think that one can or should discuss and analyse education without normative considerations. Educational thinking cannot do without a normative foundation and it is helpful and necessary to reflect upon them philosophi-cally. This is the central concern of the book, and there is nothing to be added to it by historians or educational researchers. But a purely normative approach runs the risk of repeating many of the problems inherent in educational thinking. I think that even a normative approach would gain a lot from taking the empirical and historical boundaries of its subject more seriously than Culp does. Therefore, most of my remarks are about the relationship between normative theory and historical realities.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:06 Faculty of Arts > Institute of Education
Dewey Decimal Classification:370 Education
Scopus Subject Areas:Social Sciences & Humanities > Sociology and Political Science
Social Sciences & Humanities > Political Science and International Relations
Uncontrolled Keywords:Political Science and International Relations, Sociology and Political Science
Language:English
Date:4 December 2020
Deposited On:15 Feb 2021 15:07
Last Modified:18 Feb 2021 11:37
Publisher:Taylor & Francis Open
ISSN:1654-6369
OA Status:Gold
Free access at:Publisher DOI. An embargo period may apply.
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1080/16544951.2020.1816016

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