Cover of Precollege Philosophy and Public Practice
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Displaying: 1-7 of 7 documents

1. Precollege Philosophy and Public Practice: Volume > 2
Rika Tsuji Revisiting the Community of Philosophical Inquiry through the Lens of Arendt and Butler
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The purpose of this paper is to reimagine philosophy programs in schools, such as philosophy for/with children, through a critical analysis of the work of Hannah Arendt and Judith Butler, especially in light of their understanding of the space of appearance and plurality. ​Drawing on a critical reading of Hannah Arendt along with Butler’s critique, I argue that during the enactment of the community of philosophical inquiry (CPI), the classroom becomes a space of appearance through the collective willingness of those present to be exposed to and recognize unknown others and matters in the condition of plurality. I begin by summarizing Arendt’s notions of the space of appearance and plurality. Next, I introduce Butler’s critique and reading of Arendt to focus on sociopolitical aspects of the space of appearance. Finally, I synthesize both Arendt’s and Butler’s analyses to show the phenomenological and sociopolitical aspects of the CPI.
2. Precollege Philosophy and Public Practice: Volume > 2
Erica Preston-Roedder What Can Philosophy Learn from Improvisational Theater?
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Can we learn about philosophical practice, and philosophical teaching, by examining an apparently very different discipline—improvisational theater? The short answer: yes! In particular, a consideration of improvisational theater reveals four values—play/playfulness, physicality, ensemble, and inclusivity—all of which have a role in philosophical practice and pedagogy. First, we can think of philosophy as a form of intellectual play, where theatrical techniques demonstrate that play can deepen the focus of our students. Second, philosophical teaching can be done in ways that productively utilize physicality in order to maintain focus or allow students to express their ideas through their bodies. Third, philosophical practice, and teaching, should aim to establish ensemble, which can be understood as a social configuration which establishes equality in terms of mutual dependence and responsiveness. Finally, inclusivity in the philosophical classroom can be heightened through the use of appropriately adapted improvisational techniques. In addition to laying the conceptual groundwork to understand the connection between improvisational theater and philosophy, this essay includes a number of specific exercises for instructors who wish to introduce these techniques to the classroom.
3. Precollege Philosophy and Public Practice: Volume > 2
Bailie Peterson Can Summer Philosophy Programs Help Close the Achievement Gap?
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While summer break presents educational and recreational opportunities for some students, students from depressed socioeconomic groups may face significant obstacles in the summer, including learning loss. In general, these students also lack access to a wide range of intrinsic and instrumental benefits attached to the study of philosophy. While there are currently existing philosophy programs, this contribution highlights the connections between summer experiences and the overall achievement gap, while identifying specific practices shown to yield successful summer programs. Philosophy provides an impressive set of benefits, including academic skills and opportunities for personal growth and development. Incorporating best practices while focusing on the methods and content of philosophy should, therefore, yield particularly rewarding programs. Due to these benefits, summer philosophy programs should be researched, developed, and expanded.
4. Precollege Philosophy and Public Practice: Volume > 2
Ian Olasov Philosophy for Characters
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Public philosophers have tended to think of their audience as the public, or perhaps a public or counterpublic. In my work on the Ask a Philosopher booth, however, it’s been helpful to think of our audience as made up of a handful of characters—types defined by the way in which they engage (or decline to engage) with the booth. I describe the characters I’ve encountered at the booth: orbiters, appreciaters, readers, monologuists, freethinkers, scholars, and peers. By reflecting on these characters and their needs, we can both imagine other forms of public philosophy that might better serve them, and better articulate the values that inhere in public philosophy projects like the Ask a Philosopher booth. I conclude with a brief case for the philosophy of public philosophy.
5. Precollege Philosophy and Public Practice: Volume > 2
Brian J. Collins The Broad Nature and Importance of Public Philosophy
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Many professional philosophers are hesitant about “public philosophy”—unsure about what it is and how it’s done, and downright pessimistic about whether it is an important and valuable philosophical practice. In response to this hesitancy and in support of public philosophy, I argue that most of these philosophers already find at least one form of public philosophy important and valuable for the discipline and profession: teaching. I offer and defend a broad conception of public philosophy in order support this controversial claim. I continue by briefly offering some reasons to think that public philosophy is of value for society generally (i.e., “the public”), and argue that we, as a profession, need to fully recognize our standing commitment to public-facing philosophical work; and to engage in serious discussion and debate to better examine the various types of public philosophy, clarify the broad range of public-facing activities, and encourage/reward further public work of value.
6. Precollege Philosophy and Public Practice: Volume > 2
Rena Beatrice Goldstein You Are Only as Good as You Are Behind Closed Doors: The Stability of Virtuous Dispositions
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Virtues are standardly characterized as stable dispositions. A stable disposition implies that the virtuous actor must be disposed to act well in any domain required of them. For example, a politician is not virtuous if s/he is friendly in debate with an opponent, but hostile at home with a partner or children. Some recent virtue theoretic accounts focus on specific domains in which virtues can be exercised. I call these domain-variant accounts of virtue. This paper examines two such accounts: Randall Curren and Charles Dorn’s (2018) discussion of virtue in the civic sphere, and Michael Brady’s (2018) account of virtues of vulnerability. I argue that being consistent with the standard characterization of virtue requires generalizing beyond a domain. I suggest four actions the authors could take to preserve their accounts while remaining consistent with the standard characterization. I also discuss how virtue education could be enhanced by domain-variant accounts.
7. Precollege Philosophy and Public Practice: Volume > 2
Jane Gatley, Elliott Woodhouse, Joshua Forstenzer Youth Philosophy Conferences and the Development of Adolescent Social Skills: A Case Study
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In this paper we present an empirical case study into the effects of attending a philosophy conference on social skill development in 15- to 18-year-old students. We focus on the impact that the conference had on their communication skills, sociability, cooperation and teamwork skills, self-confidence, determination, social responsibility, and empathy. These are social skills previously studied in 2017 by Siddiqui et al. who found student development in these areas as a result of Philosophy for Children (P4C) sessions in primary schools. In this paper, we ask whether our conference—Pursuit of Knowledge—brought about comparable results. Overall, attendees reported that they felt that the conference had improved their communication skills, sociability, cooperation and teamwork, self-confidence, determination, social responsibility and empathy. We conclude that further research into the potential of models of philosophy akin to the model employed by the conference should be conducted. We discuss the potential of this model as a means of educating for social skills.