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Rigour and Recoil: Claims of Reason, Failures of Expressiveness

Standish, P; (2018) Rigour and Recoil: Claims of Reason, Failures of Expressiveness. Journal of Philosophy of Education , 52 (4) pp. 609-626. 10.1111/1467-9752.12325. Green open access

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Abstract

This paper begins with the ‘ancient quarrel’ between philosophy and literature, which, with the subsequent splitting of logos into word and reason, comes to mark philosophy's self-conception and much other thinking besides – in the process, compartmentalizing what is understood by ‘literature’. Philosophy, thus separated becomes atemporal and abstract, preoccupied with propositions rather than statements or sentences, and, in some of its incarnations, aligning itself with science. Language, thus separated, becomes ‘literary’ – that is, it comes to be epitomized by self-consciousness about literary form and style; and a casualty of this is the ‘poetic’, a term whose origins in poiesis (production of meaning) are forgotten. But the relationship has never been as settled as it may have seemed, and examples from classical and contemporary philosophy and literature help to demonstrate this. At stake in these examples are the ways in which reason requires that one means what one says. A classic expression of commitment to this view is provided by the words of Polonius’ words to his son, in Hamlet: ‘This above all, to thine own self be true.’ The implications of this in relation to the claims of reason are developed with reference to moral education and the task of the teacher.

Type: Article
Title: Rigour and Recoil: Claims of Reason, Failures of Expressiveness
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1111/1467-9752.12325
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1111/1467-9752.12325
Language: English
Additional information: This version is the author accepted manuscript. For information on re-use, please refer to the publisher’s terms and conditions.
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Education
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Education > UCL Institute of Education
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Education > UCL Institute of Education > IOE - Education, Practice and Society
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10078821
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