Learning to Flourish offers a lucid, penetrating, philosophical exploration of liberal learning: a still-evolving tradition of theory and practice that has dominated and sustained intellectual life and learning in much of the globe for two millennia.
Daniel R. DeNicola weighs the views of both advocates and critics of the liberal arts, and interprets liberal education as aimed supremely at understanding and living a good life, as a vital tradition generating five competing but complementary paradigms that transcend theories of curriculum and pedagogy and are manifested in particular social contexts. He examines the transformative power of liberal education and its relation to such values as freedom, autonomy, and democracy, reflecting on the importance of intrinsic value and moral understanding. Finally, he considers age-old obstacles and current threats to liberal education, ultimately asserting its value for and urgent need in a global, pluralistic, technologically advanced society.
Offering a bold yet nuanced theory of liberal education, this study will be of great interest to educators as well as those specializing in Philosophy of Education.
Daniel R. DeNicola is Professor of Philosophy at Gettysburg College, where he was Provost for over a decade. Previously, he held similar titles for parallel periods at Rollins College. He earned his doctorate in Philosophy of Education from Harvard University, where he has served as a Visiting Scholar.
Preface & Acknowledgments Introduction Part I: Toward a Theory of Liberal Education 1. Mixed Messages and False Starts 2. Liberal Education and Human Flourishing Part II: Paradigms of Liberal Education 3. Transmission of Culture 4. Self-Actualization 5. Understanding the World 6. Engagement with the World 7. The Skills of Learning Part III: The Values and Moral Aims of Liberal Education 8. Core Values of Liberal Education 9. Intrinsic Value 10.Educating a Good Person Part IV: Obstacles, Threats, and Prospects 11. Persistent Concerns 12. Newfound Threats 13. Promise and Prospects Bibliography Index