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The problem of directive moral education

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University of Bedfordshire, Polhill Avenue

Room G2.01

Bedford

MK41 9EA

United Kingdom

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A seminar by Professor Michael Hand (University of Birmingham)

The problem of directive moral education lies in the tension between two thoughts widely entertained by teachers, policy-makers and the general public. The first thought is that morality must be learned: children must come to see what morality requires of them and acquire the motivation to submit to its authority. The second thought is that morality is controversial: there is reasonable disagreement about both the requirements of morality and the reasons to comply with them. I draw distinctions between two kinds of moral education (moral formation and moral inquiry) and between two kinds of moral inquiry (directive and nondirective). I argue that the justificatory status of some moral standards is such that schools can properly try to bring it about that children subscribe to them and believe them to be justified.

Part of the 2017/18 PESGB Bedford seminar series

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University of Bedfordshire, Polhill Avenue

Room G2.01

Bedford

MK41 9EA

United Kingdom

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