There is more to education than teaching and learning, and more to anthropology than making studies of other people’s lives. Here Tim Ingold argues that both anthropology and education are ways of studying, and of leading life, with others. In this provocative book, he goes beyond an exploration of the interface between the disciplines of anthropology and education to claim their fundamental equivalence.
Taking inspiration from the writings of John Dewey, Ingold presents his argument in four close-knit chapters. Education, he contends, is not the transmission of authorised knowledge from one generation to the next but a way of attending to things, opening up paths of growth and discovery. What does this mean for the ways we think about study and the school, teaching and learning, and the freedoms they exemplify? And how does it bear on the practices of participation and observation, on ways of study in the field and in the school, on art and science, research and teaching, and the university?
Written in an engaging and accessible style, this book is intended as much for educationalists as for anthropologists. It will appeal to all who are seeking alternatives to mainstream agendas in social and educational policy, including educators and students in philosophy, the social sciences, educational psychology, environmentalism and arts practice.
“From his fieldwork among the Skolt Sami, who taught him the importance of learning to find one’s own path through an attentiveness to one’s environment and an attunement to others, to his more recent work on lines, Tim Ingold has built an eloquent case against the idealist fantasy that thought transcends existence. Inspired by John Dewey’s view of education as a way of engendering viable forms of social life, Anthropology And/As Education argues persuasively that both the classroom and the field are potential sites of creative transformation – means of opening ourselves up to life rather than imparting authorized knowledge.”
Michael D. Jackson, Harvard University, USA
"Tim Ingold has written a beautiful, coherent and imaginative book on education and anthropology. One of its many achievements is to connect the new and older philosophies of education from John Dewey to Gert Biesta with his own theories on attentionality and correspondence. Another is his argument for how anthropology and education are parallel endeavours. Most of all the book can offer educationalist from schools to universities a new vision of what education could be: an open-ended, generous journey where teachers and students travel side by side to explore life as it unfolds without rigid transmissions of prefixed dichotomies."
Cathrine Hasse, University of Aarhus, Denmark
"In proposing and forging words such as ‘longing’, ‘undercommoning’, ‘togethering’, ‘doing undergoing’, ‘agencing’, and especially ‘corresponding/correspondence’, and in exploring the ‘lines of interest’ and the milieu of ideas they open up, this little book offers an intriguing and inspiring vocabulary and toolkit to think and practice anthropology as/and education. There is no doubt that it contributes significantly to the elaboration of a much needed alternative for the dominant language of ‘learning’ in the field of education and of ‘understanding’ in the field of anthropology"
Jan Masschelein, University of KU Leuven, Belgium
"An impassioned argument for education that is about exposure and not immunization, Anthropology and/as Education asks us to do nothing less than rethink the role of education in the university today. Moving beyond transmission (“the death of education”) toward transformation, Ingold proposes an anthropology of “undercommoning” that, following Dewey, takes seriously the relation between “doing and undergoing.” Here, practices of knowing activate correspondences, making felt minor gestures that enliven experience. In this arena of study where one never studies alone, anthropology both “wonders and wanders,” learning along the way how to follow and to attend differently to the world in its becoming. Against method, Ingold makes a plea: let the world become our multiversity and let the university learn, in the undercommoning, how to be restored to education. A gesture of care, this is a book we cannot do without."
Erin Manning, Concordia University, Canada
Preface and acknowledgements
1. Against transmission
2. For attention
3. Education in the minor key
4. Anthropology, art and the university