So many questions, such an imagination, endless speculation: the child seems to be a natural philosopher--until the ripe old age of eight or nine, when the spirit of inquiry mysteriously fades. What happened? Was it something we did--or didn't do? Was the child truly the philosophical being he once seemed? Gareth Matthews takes up these concerns in The Philosophy of Childhood, a searching account of children's philosophical potential and of childhood as an area of philosophical inquiry. Seeking a philosophy that represents the range and depth of children's inquisitive minds, Matthews explores both how children think and how we, as adults, think about them. Adult preconceptions about the mental life of children tend to discourage a child's philosophical bent, Matthews suggests, and he probes the sources of these limiting assumptions: restrictive notions of maturation and conceptual development; possible lapses in episodic memory; the experience of identity and growth as "successive selves," which separate us from our own childhoods. By exposing the underpinnings of our adult views of childhood, Matthews, a philosopher and longtime advocate of children's rights, clears the way for recognizing the philosophy of childhood as a legitimate field of inquiry. He then conducts us through various influential models for understanding what it is to be a child, from the theory that individual development recapitulates the development of the human species to accounts of moral and cognitive development, including Piaget's revolutionary model. The metaphysics of playdough, the authenticity of children's art, the effects of divorce and intimations of mortality on a child--all have a place in Matthews's rich discussion of the philosophical nature of childhood. His book will prompt us to reconsider the distinctions we make about development and the competencies of mind, and what we lose by denying childhood its full philosophical breadth.
Philosophical accounts of childhood have tended to derive from Plato and Aristotle, who portrayed children (like women, animals, slaves, and the mob) as unreasonable and incomplete in terms of lacking formal and final causes and ends. Despite much rhetoric concerning either the sinfulness or purity of children (as in Puritanism and Romanticism respectively), the assumption that children are marginal has endured. Modern theories, including recent interpretations of neuroscience, have re-enforced this sense of children's incompleteness. This fascinating monograph seeks to overturn this philosophical tradition. It develops instead a "fully semiotic" perspective, arguing that in so far as children are no more or less interpreters of the world than adults, they are no more or less reasoning agents. This, the book shows, has radical implications, particularly for the question of how we seek to educate children. One Aristotelian legacy is the unquestioned belief that societies must educate the young irrespective of the latter's wishes. Another is that childhood must be grown out of and left behind.
Childhood looms large in our understanding of human life, as a phase through which all adults have passed. Childhood is foundational to the development of selfhood, the formation of interests, values and skills and to the lifespan as a whole. Understanding what it is like to be a child, and what differences childhood makes, are thus essential for any broader understanding of the human condition. The Routledge Handbook of the Philosophy of Childhood and Children is an outstanding reference source for the key topics, problems and debates in this crucial and exciting field and is the first collection of its kind. Comprising over thirty chapters by a team of international contributors the Handbook is divided into five parts: · Being a child · Childhood and moral status · Parents and children · Children in society · Children and the state. Questions covered include: What is a child? Is childhood a uniquely valuable state, and if so why? Can we generalize about the goods of childhood? What rights do children have, and are they different from adults’ rights? What (if anything) gives people a right to parent? What role, if any, ought biology to play in determining who has the right to parent a particular child? What kind of rights can parents legitimately exercise over their children? What roles do relationships with siblings and friends play in the shaping of childhoods? How should we think about sexuality and disability in childhood, and about racialised children? How should society manage the education of children? How are children’s lives affected by being taken into social care? The Routledge Handbook of the Philosophy of Childhood and Children is essential reading for students and researchers in philosophy of childhood, political philosophy and ethics as well as those in related disciplines such as education, psychology, sociology, social policy, law, social work, youth work, neuroscience and anthropology.
The philosophy of childhood is still a young science area. Human being is childhood and adulthood and requires communication, a dialogue. The dialogue philosophy offers an integrative basis in the interdisciplinary context of psychology, biology, pedagogy, sociology, law and religion: •What is childhood? •Which natural law does a child have? •Who carries the responsibility for a child? •Which stages of childhood development can be differentiated in dialogue philosophy? •What means the generation concept for childhood and adulthood? •What is the basic thesis of education? •Which myth (fairy tale) was paved the way for our state constitution? •Which parenting conflict remains unsolvable? •What fundamental rights are missing in the United Nations Convention on the rights of child? •Which rights and duties can be deduced from the self-understanding of nature? Towards adulthood being a child means a weaker position and the risk of abuse. In the childhood-philosophical sense, an answer to the risks of being a child and the best possible protection of the child is required. The legal foundation is the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child. But we do not reach the children with laws. It takes more than just dialogue and parental care. There are controversial arguments in politics and science. The author finds clear answers.
This book explores the shapes and boundaries of the emergent field of philosophy of childhood, and its intersections with the history of philosophy, education, pedagogy, literature and film, psychoanalysis, family studies, developmental theory, ethics, history of subjectivity, history of culture, and evolutionary theory.
"This book seeks to join the ongoing, interdisciplinary approach to children's literature by means of sustained readings of individual texts by means of important works in the history of philosophy. Its inclusion of authors from both various departments--philosophy, literature, religion, and education--and various countries is an attempt to show how traditional boundaries between disciplines might become more permeable and how philosophy offers important insights to this interdisciplinary, critical conversation"--provided by publisher.
In this important survey, an international group of leadingphilosophers chart the development of philosophy of education inthe twentieth century and point to signficant questions for itsfuture. Presents a definitive introduction to the core areas ofphilosophy of education. Contains 20 newly-commissioned articles, all of which arewritten by internationally distinguished scholars. Each chapter reviews a problem, examines the current state ofthe discipline with respect to the topic, and discusses possiblefutures of the field. Provides a solid foundation for further study.
Dr. Maria Montessori opened the first Casa dei Bambini (Childrens House) on 6 January 1907 in San Lorenzo, Rome. Through her observations and work with these children she discovered their astonishing, almost effortless ability to learn. Thus began a century of great work uncovering the true nature of childhood. Times have changed, and science has made great progress, and so has our work; but our principles have only been confirmed, and along with them our conviction that mankind can hope for a solution to its problems, among which the most urgent are those of peace and unity, only by turning its attention and energies to the discovery of the child and to the development of the great potentialities of the human personality in the course of its formation. Dr. Montessori from the forward to The Discovery of the Child, Poona 1948
A dialogue between developmental research and continental philosophy that illuminates how children experience the world.
In close collaboration with the late Matthew Lipman, Ann Margaret Sharp pioneered the theory and practice of ‘the community of philosophical inquiry’ (CPI) as a way of practicing ‘Philosophy for Children’ and prepared thousands of philosophers and teachers throughout the world in this practice. In Community of Inquiry with Ann Margaret Sharp represents a long-awaited and much-needed anthology of Sharp’s insightful and influential scholarship, bringing her enduring legacy to new generations of academics, postgraduate students and researchers in the fields of education, philosophy, philosophy of education, Philosophy for Children and philosophy of childhood.? Sharp developed a unique perspective on the interdependence of education, philosophy, personhood and community that remains influential in many parts of the world. This perspective was shaped not only by Sharp’s work in philosophy and education, but also by her avid studies in literature, feminism, aesthetic theory and ecumenical spirituality. Containing valuable contributions from senior figures in the fields in which Sharp produced her most focused scholarship, the chapters in this book present a critical overview of how Sharp’s ideas relate to education, philosophy of education, and the Philosophy for Children movement as a whole. The historical and philosophical nature of this collection means that it will be a vital resource for philosophers and educators. It should also be of great interest to teacher educators and those involved in the study of pragmatism and feminism, as well as the history of education across the globe, particularly in the United States of America.
This is a comprehensive resource of original essays by leading thinkers exploring the newly emerging inter-disciplinary field of the philosophy of psychiatry. The contributors aim to define this exciting field and to highlight the philosophical assumptions and issues that underlie psychiatric theory and practice, the category of mental disorder, and rationales for its social, clinical and legal treatment. As a branch of medicine and a healing practice, psychiatry relies on presuppositions that are deeply and unavoidably philosophical. Conceptions of rationality, personhood and autonomy frame our understanding and treatment of mental disorder. Philosophical questions of evidence, reality, truth, science, and values give meaning to each of the social institutions and practices concerned with mental health care. The psyche, the mind and its relation to the body, subjectivity and consciousness, personal identity and character, thought, will, memory, and emotions are equally the stuff of traditional philosophical inquiry and of the psychiatric enterprise. A new research field--the philosophy of psychiatry--began to form during the last two decades of the twentieth century. Prompted by a growing recognition that philosophical ideas underlie many aspects of clinical practice, psychiatric theorizing and research, mental health policy, and the economics and politics of mental health care, academic philosophers, practitioners, and philosophically trained psychiatrists have begun a series of vital, cross-disciplinary exchanges. This volume provides a sampling of the research yield of those exchanges. Leading thinkers in this area, including clinicians, philosophers, psychologists, and interdisciplinary teams, provide original discussions that are not only expository and critical, but also a reflection of their authors' distinctive and often powerful and imaginative viewpoints and theories. All the discussions break new theoretical ground. As befits such an interdisciplinary effort, they are methodologically eclectic, and varied and divergent in their assumptions and conclusions; together, they comprise a significant new exploration, definition, and mapping of the philosophical aspects of psychiatric theory and practice.
This book explores the idea of a childlike education and offers critical tools to question traditional forms of education, and alternative ways to understand and practice the relationship between education and childhood. Engaging with the work of Michel Foucault, Jacques Rancière, Giorgio Agamben and Simón Rodríguez, it contributes to the development of a philosophical framework for the pedagogical idea at the core of the book, that of a childlike education. Divided into two parts, the book introduces innovative ideas through philosophical argument and discussion, challenging existing understandings of what it means to teach or to form a child, and putting into question the idea of education as a process of formation. The first part of the book consists of a dialogue with a number of interlocutors in order to develop an original conception of education. The second part presents the idea of a childlike education, beginning with a discussion of the relationships between childhood and philosophy, and followed by a critique of the place of philosophical experience in a childhood of education. Instead of asking how philosophy might educate childhood, this book raises the question of how childhood might educate philosophy. It will be of key value to researchers, educators and postgraduate students in the fields of education and the human sciences.
This introductory book considers early childhood issues within the context of society, family, and classroom approaches that influence the care and education of children from birth through age eight to help teachers build their teaching philosophy.Contains detailed cases, teaching checklists, tips for teachers, ad philosophy building activities in every chapter. Provides four chapters on child development. Presents chapters on family development and family-school relations.For Education and School Administrators in Early Childhood Education.
David Webster explores the notion of desire as found in the Buddhist Pali Canon. Beginning by addressing the idea of a 'paradox of desire', whereby we must desire to end desire, the varieties of desire that are articulated in the Pali texts are examined. A range of views of desire, as found in Western thought, are presented as well as Hindu and Jain approaches. An exploration of the concept of ditthi(view or opinion) is also provided, exploring the way in which 'holding views' can be seen as analogous to the process of desiring. Other subjects investigated include the mind-body relationship, the range of Pali terms for desire, and desire's positive spiritual value. A comparative exploration of the various approaches completes the work.

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