ABSTRACT

We shall discuss in the next chapter the possibilities and problems of moral education as a discrete subject in the school curriculum. We turn here to an issue which, while it may sound similar to that one, is in fact quite distinct: how far do or should moral principles express themselves in the education process? A generation of moral philosophers have turned their attention to this question, expressing their views both in an outpouring of books on the subject and, in a process of continuous debate, through articles and papers published in the Journal of the Society of the Philosophy of Education. This debate ranges over issues far too numerous to be discussed here; what we can do is to take a look at the central issue – what education is – and consider its implication for both teacher and learner. A brief sketch of some of the most distinctive contributions to the discussion made by certain philosophers over the centuries should then allow for the presentation of a number of general conclusions on the matter – conclusions which you may wish to challenge, or modify. You will have the chance to do this in Case Study 42, which follows the chapter.