considering subject positions with biesta

riku välitalo


People who attended the ICPIC conference last summer were given a opportunity to consider some perspectives offered by the acknowledged scholar and educational thinker, Gert Biesta. His presentation in Madrid focused on exploring the educational significance of doing philosophy with children from a particular viewpoint. Biesta addressed the question of whether Philosophy for Children (P4C) movement can offer something more than a clear head, that is, a critical, creative, caring and collaborative thinker. To get the message through, he analysed some wider patterns in the educational field, namely the rise of the language of learning in various educational environments. According to Biesta, this shift has created tendencies towards egocentrism in education. He articulated a subject position from which we can also start addressing the heart and soul of others. In what follows, I will explore this different take on positioning students basing on my reading of the scholarship of P4C and the talk of Gert Biesta accompanied with reading of his other works. I will offer a few views that seem to entail connections between the scholarship in P4C and Biesta. Furthermore, I will pose some questions the talk provoked.


philosophy for children; subjectivity; gert biesta; community of philosophical inquiry; education

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