Virtue, Dialogue, and the Common School

Eamonn Callan

in Creating Citizens

Published in print September 1997 | ISBN: 9780198292586
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780191598913 | DOI:

Series: Oxford Political Theory

 Virtue, Dialogue, and the Common School

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Moral dialogue in schools would seem necessary if we are to cultivate the respect for reasonable differences, as well as the consensus on matters of basic justice, that a liberal political education requires. This chapter shows how the fact of reasonable pluralism creates insuperable difficulties for the practice of moral dialogue in schools if dialogue is modelled on Noddings's ethic of care or Mill's conception of the marketplace of ideas. Rawls's notion of reasonable agreement as the object of politico‐moral dialogue is shown to represent a better alternative to Noddings or Mill, albeit one that makes dialogue a difficult and delicate endeavour that may be beyond the competence of many teachers.

Keywords: care; justice; John Stuart Mill; moral dialogue; Nel Noddings; political education; reasonable agreement; reasonable pluralism; John Rawls

Chapter.  11642 words. 

Subjects: Political Theory

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