Radical Schooling for Democracy: Engaging Philosophy of Education for the Public Good, 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

Radical Schooling for Democracy

Engaging Philosophy of Education for the Public Good, 1st Edition

By Neil Hooley


216 pages

Purchasing Options:$ = USD
Paperback: 9780367192525
pub: 2019-01-08
SAVE ~$9.99
Hardback: 9781138647169
pub: 2017-08-10
SAVE ~$31.00
eBook (VitalSource) : 9781315627205
pub: 2017-08-07
from $24.98

FREE Standard Shipping!


Radical Schooling for Democracy proposes that formal education around the world has a serious philosophical weakness: as the ideology of neoliberalism increasingly dominates economic and as a consequence, educational and social life, formal education has adopted a narrow, rational and economic purpose for all students. Hooley argues that, under these circumstances, schooling is inherently frustrating and alienating for vast numbers of children as they are systematically removed from the big ideas and practices of history and knowledge of which they and their communities are a part and are instead inducted into a technical and superficial rationality of human existence.

Radical Schooling for Democracy begins with a progressive and contemporary overview of philosophical and sociological thought during the European Enlightenment and identifies a framework of understanding that is extremely weak in education. This action framework of integrated philosophy, sociology and epistemology generates an ‘action theory’ that not only accounts for human progress, but has the potential to radically change the nature of schooling. A number of theorists who generally support a ‘theory of action’ is considered, ranging from Aristotle, Marx, Dewey and Freire to Habermas. From this analysis, the curriculum, pedagogical, assessment and research constructs of schooling are detailed such that a coherent and integrated model of education as an attribute of being human can be articulated, rather than being seen as a disparate derivative from other disciplines.

With its coverage of internationally relevant issues, this book will be essential reading for academics, graduate students, policymakers and researchers in education, philosophy, sociology and epistemology, as well as teachers and pre-service teachers.


‘Neil Hooley's new book offers a philosophical vision of radical schooling for democracy in terms of criticizing neoliberal and dehumanizing reform of education. It is an outstanding contribution to reconstruct the idea of public education through a comprehensive and fascinating approach to pragmatism and the public good.’- Masamichi Ueno, Professor of Education, Daito Bunka University, Japan

Table of Contents

List of figures

List of tables

About the Author



Dedication: John Dewey


Part 1. Thinking Philosophically

1. Trends and tensions of philosophy and sociology

2. Understandings of epistemology

3. Action theory and theorists

4. Creative democracy, ethics, power and control

Part II. Thinking Educationally

1. Education as philosophy of practice

  • Philosophy 1: Education as a knowledge discipline
  • Philosophy 2. Religion, the sacred and profane
  • Philosophy 3. Conservatism, what is or should be
  • Philosophy 4. Neoliberalism, capitalism personified
  • Philosophy 5. Social Democracy, in practice or in name
  • Philosophy 6. Science, explanation or understanding
  • Philosophy 7. Marxism, social class and social division

Part III. Thinking Democratically

1. Social class, equity and socio-economic positions

2. Connecting with Indigenous education

3. Teacher education as experience

4.Radical schooling for all



About the Author

Neil Hooley is a Lecturer in the College of Education at Victoria University in Melbourne, Australia.

About the Series

New Directions in the Philosophy of Education

This book series is devoted to the exploration of new directions in the philosophy of education. After the linguistic turn, the cultural turn, and the historical turn, where might we go? Does the future promise a digital turn with a greater return to connectionism, biology and biopolitics based on new understandings of system theory and knowledge ecologies? Does it foreshadow a genuinely alternative radical global turn based on a new openness and interconnectedness? Does it leave humanism behind or will it reengage with the question of the human in new and unprecedented ways? How should philosophy of education reflect new forces of globalization? How can it become less Anglo-centric and develop a greater sensitivity to other traditions, languages, and forms of thinking and writing, including those that are not routed in the canon of Western philosophy but in other traditions that share the ‘love of wisdom’ that characterizes the wide diversity within Western philosophy itself. Can this be done through a turn to intercultural philosophy? To indigenous forms of philosophy and philosophizing? Does it need a post-Wittgensteinian philosophy of education? A postpostmodern philosophy? Or should it perhaps leave the whole construction of 'post'-positions behind?

In addition to the question of the intellectual resources for the future of philosophy of education, what are the issues and concerns that philosophers of education should engage with? How should they position themselves? What is their specific contribution? What kind of intellectual and strategic alliances should they pursue? Should philosophy of education become more global, and if so, what would the shape of that be? Should it become more cosmopolitan or perhaps more decentred? Perhaps most importantly in the digital age, the time of the global knowledge economy that reprofiles education as privatized human capital and simultaneously in terms of an historic openness, is there a philosophy of education that grows out of education itself, out of the concerns for new forms of teaching, studying, learning and speaking that can provide comment on ethical and epistemological configurations of economics and politics of knowledge? Can and should this imply a reconnection with questions of democracy and justice?

This series comprises texts that explore, identify and articulate new directions in the philosophy of education. It aims to build bridges, both geographically and temporally: bridges across different traditions and practices and bridges towards a different future for philosophy of education.

Learn more…

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings: