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2: The Handbooks from Philosophers

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    • 2.1: What is a Classical Education?
      In this essay, Montaigne begins by saying that he does not know how to educate children but then goes on to give a series of practical recommendations based on his philosophical positions on the nature of knowledge and teaching. His philosophical system is not entirely clear throughout the essay, but the reflection questions will ask you to investigate what might have been his underlying philosophical positions in traditional realms such as epistemology, ontology, and ethics.
    • 2.2: What Kind of Subjects are Worth Investigating?
      In this text, Descartes outlines several of his rules for rigorous thinking. The two principal questions that he seeks to answer are 1) what kind of things deserve the attention of rigorous and extended thinking and 2) on what topics can we obtain certainty? Descartes’ claims about what objects are worthy of attention and why they are worthy of attention stand in fairly stark contrast to the underlying mindset behind exploration-based curricula of the 21st century.
    • 2.3: How to Educate a Gentleman?
      In this section Locke lays out several of his thoughts on the best way to edcuate a young gentleman. He speaks primarily of how a tutor should act toward a young puil. Much of his attention is focused on how avoiding physical punishment and helping students develope their own motivation.
    • 2.4: How is the Desire to Learn Cultivated?
      In this text, Rousseau vigorously attempts to make the case for allowing nature to educate a child by working to help the child keep their curiosity. He also disagrees with Locke directly and indirectly. If you have not read the essay by Locke, it may be best to read it first.
    • 2.5: How Can Girls Receive an Equal Education?
      A Vindication of the Rights of Woman (1792), written Mary Wollstonecraft, is one of the earliest works of feminist philosophy. In it, Wollstonecraft responds to those educational and political theorists of the 18th century who believed that women should not receive a rational education.

    2: The Handbooks from Philosophers is shared under a Public Domain license and was authored, remixed, and/or curated by Kevin Johnstun.

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