•  1
    Levinas, Ethics and the People: A reply to Soyoung Lee and Paul Standish
    Journal of Philosophy of Education 53 (2): 440-452. 2019.
    Journal of Philosophy of Education, EarlyView.
  •  8
    Virtue through Challenge: Moral Development and Self‐transformation
    Journal of Philosophy of Education 51 (4): 785-800. 2017.
    In this article, I argue that although the Aristotelian ideal of leading a virtuous life for its own sake is admirable, conventional Aristotelian and neo-Aristotelian accounts of how it might be realised are empirically inadequate: Habituation is unlikely to produce ‘a love of virtue’, practical experience cannot then produce practical judgement or phronesis, and Aristotle's conception of a virtuous life excludes all but an idealised elite. Instead, I argue that two conceptually distinct aspects…Read more
  •  27
    Levinas: Ethics or Mystification?
    Journal of Philosophy of Education 51 (1): 524-537. 2017.
    The metaphysical ethics of Levinas appeals to many philosophers of education because it seems to promise ethics and social justice without recourse to moral norms, ‘totalising’ political systems or religious belief. However, the notion that the subject can be detached from its worldly being—that one can posit a primordial metaphysical pre-conscious pre-phenomenal self which stands in ethical relation to a primordial metaphysical pre-conscious pre-phenomenal Other—is highly questionable. From an …Read more
  •  782
    A critique of positive psychology—or 'the new science of happiness'
    Journal of Philosophy of Education 42 (3-4): 591-608. 2008.
    This paper argues that the new science of positive psychology is founded on a whole series of fallacious arguments; these involve circular reasoning, tautology, failure to clearly define or properly apply terms, the identification of causal relations where none exist, and unjustified generalisation. Instead of demonstrating that positive attitudes explain achievement, success, well-being and happiness, positive psychology merely associates mental health with a particular personality type: a chee…Read more
  •  5
    Rhetoric, Paideia and the Old Idea of a Liberal Education
    Philosophy of Education 41 (2): 183-206. 2007.
  •  5
    A Critique Of Positive Psychology—or ‘the New Science Of Happiness’
    Philosophy of Education 42 (3-4): 591-608. 2008.
    This paper argues that the new science of positive psychology is founded on a whole series of fallacious arguments; these involve circular reasoning, tautology, failure to clearly define or properly apply terms, the identification of causal relations where none exist, and unjustified generalisation. Instead of demonstrating that positive attitudes explain achievement, success, well-being and happiness, positive psychology merely associates mental health with a particular personality type: a chee…Read more
  •  17
    Levinas: Ethics or Mystification?
    Journal of Philosophy of Education 50 (4). 2016.
    The metaphysical ethics of Levinas appeals to many philosophers of education because it seems to promise ethics and social justice without recourse to moral norms, ‘totalising’ political systems or religious belief. However, the notion that the subject can be detached from its worldly being—that one can posit a primordial metaphysical pre-conscious pre-phenomenal self which stands in ethical relation to a primordial metaphysical pre-conscious pre-phenomenal Other—is highly questionable. From an …Read more
  •  47
    Rhetoric, paideia and the old idea of a liberal education
    Journal of Philosophy of Education 41 (2). 2007.
    This paper argues that the modern curriculum of academic subject disciplines embodies a rationalist conception of pure, universal knowledge that does little to cultivate, humanise or form the self. A liberal education in the classical humanist tradition, by contrast, develops a personal culture or paideia, an understanding of the self as a social, political and cultural being, and the practical wisdom needed to make judgements in practical, political and human affairs. The paper concludes by ask…Read more