Philosophical and Psychological
Foundations of Education
QUOTATIONS BY PHILOSOPHER
 

RICHARD RORTY

Richard Rorty, 2003  

My Educational Philosophy
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Aristotle
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Emerson
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Gardner
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Excerpts from "Hermeneutics, General Studies, and Teaching"

We need to see education not as helping to get us in touch with something non-human called Truth or Reality, but rather in touch with our own potentialities. ~ Richard Rorty, "Hermeneutics, General Studies, and Teaching"


To say that there really are objective values out there, that there is a moral reality to be corresponded with, seems as pointless as saying that God is on our side. ~ Richard Rorty, "Hermeneutics, General Studies, and Teaching"


Humanistic learning and laboratory science are both intellectually liberating, simply because any way to unblock the road of inquiry, to prevent thought from being imprisoned within a single vocabulary, is liberating. ~ Richard Rorty, "Hermeneutics, General Studies, and Teaching"


It doesn't make much difference whether a students' heroes are chemists or poets, or whether the discipline in which he immerses himself is philosophy or mathematics. All that matters is that the student not see what he's doing as less or more than what it is—participation in a community effort, learning to take a hand in what is going on, learning to speak more of the language which his time and place in history has destined him to speak. ~ Richard Rorty, "Hermeneutics, General Studies, and Teaching"


These heroes of humanity are the people who dissolved the problems of their day by transcending the vocabulary in which these problems were posed. ~ Richard Rorty, "Hermeneutics, General Studies, and Teaching"


The fear that education may become merely "vocational" and no longer "liberal" is the fear that the students will never have heroes, will never fall in love with anything. ~ Richard Rorty, "Hermeneutics, General Studies, and Teaching"


The sense of the human community which seems to me the goal of education requires that one avoid both a cold-hearted, and self-absorbed, relativism and the complacent sense that only those who have fallen in love with certain particular heroes are fit companions. ~ Richard Rorty, "Hermeneutics, General Studies, and Teaching"


The goal of general studies seems to me to make sure that no student has only one hero, and that there is enough overlap between the students' sets of heroes to permit the students to share their romantic sensibilities, to have interesting conversations with one another. ~ Richard Rorty, "Hermeneutics, General Studies, and Teaching"


There is nothing much to be said about general studies or the teaching of such studies save a warning against taking either as more than ways of helping the young to join the human race. What helps them to do this is—to employ a factitious antithesis—love rather than knowledge. ~ Richard Rorty, "Hermeneutics, General Studies, and Teaching"


We need to resist confusing the facts that we have trouble talking to somebody who doesn't know, or hasn't read, or can't do, this or that with the claim that somebody in that position isn't "properly educated." ~ Richard Rorty, "Hermeneutics, General Studies, and Teaching"


The only way in which one will get general studies teaching which does more than simple access to the library or the laboratory would have done is to have teachers whose sense of participation in the community—and thus whose sense of the point of their own lives—is somehow bound up with reading the books, or performing the activities, which they have picked for the "core." ~ Richard Rorty, "Hermeneutics, General Studies, and Teaching"


Teaching general studies . . . is erotic or nothing. Either the student is moved to think of himself as a potential member of a community which includes both his teacher and the author of the book being read, or nothing happens at all. ~ Richard Rorty, "Hermeneutics, General Studies, and Teaching"


[General studies] should be an invitation to join a community, a community of problem-solvers, united by the romantic sense that solving these problems is the point of living. ~ Richard Rorty, "Hermeneutics, General Studies, and Teaching"


Nobody gets to be intellectually sophisticated without going through a stage of pseudo-sophistication first. ~ Richard Rorty, "Hermeneutics, General Studies, and Teaching"


 

 
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