Is Philosophy Educationally 'Profitable'? A Functionalist Critique of the Functionality Desideratum of Education Cover Image

Este filosofia „rentabilă” educațional? O critică funcționalistă a dezideratului de funcționalitate a educației
Is Philosophy Educationally 'Profitable'? A Functionalist Critique of the Functionality Desideratum of Education

Author(s): Dorina Pătrunsu
Subject(s): Philosophy of Education
Published by: Editura Academiei Române
Keywords: liberal arts; philosophical education; education fallacy; intrinsic value; functionalism-based argument;

Summary/Abstract: The idea that philosophical education has advantages is not one that I find epistemically questionable. However, the justification of the need for philosophical education based on these indisputable advantages raises serious problems that I think need to be clarified, all the more so or precisely for the sake of preserving the credibility of that idea. The fundamental objection is that the use of the consequentialist or functionalist argument as the dominant argument in the defense/justification of the need for philosophical education makes superficial not only the plea for the advantages it would generate but also the very idea of education. The “education fallacy” consists in assuming that you can achieve clear and certain results when, in fact, you can only hope for them. My purpose in this essay is a combined one: 1. To show that the functionalist argument does not ensure the desired functionality in the service of which it is put; 2. To show starting from (1) that: – the philosophy option, although not a common choice in shaping a professional career, is not one to be ignored. Paradoxically, what makes it eligible is the very functionalist argument, i.e., the argument that discredits it in principle; – philosophical education satisfies to the greatest degree the desired functionality required of education, today. Contrary to common intuition, the very functionalist argument that should ensure its success makes it least suitable for it. The theoretical framework for the advancement of these arguments will be the one outlined by the latest but also the most challenging analyses undertaken by the researchers and philosophers of education, the return to the foundations without renouncing the desired functionality of education being (perhaps) one of the lines more surprising of it.

  • Issue Year: LXIX/2022
  • Issue No: 5
  • Page Range: 561-580
  • Page Count: 20
  • Language: Romanian