The Educated Mind: How Cognitive Tools Shape Our Understanding

Paperback | December 1, 1998

byKieran Egan

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The Educated Mind offers a bold and revitalizing new vision for today's uncertain educational system. Kieran Egan reconceives education, taking into account how we learn. He proposes the use of particular "intellectual tools"—such as language or literacy—that shape how we make sense of the world. These mediating tools generate successive kinds of understanding: somatic, mythic, romantic, philosophical, and ironic. Egan's account concludes with practical proposals for how teaching and curriculum can be changed to reflect the way children learn.

"A carefully argued and readable book. . . . Egan proposes a radical change of approach for the whole process of education. . . . There is much in this book to interest and excite those who discuss, research or deliver education."—Ann Fullick, New Scientist

"A compelling vision for today's uncertain educational system."—Library Journal

"Almost anyone involved at any level or in any part of the education system will find this a fascinating book to read."—Dr. Richard Fox, British Journal of Educational Psychology

"A fascinating and provocative study of cultural and linguistic history, and of how various kinds of understanding that can be distinguished in that history are recapitulated in the developing minds of children."—Jonty Driver, New York Times Book Review

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From Our Editors

The ills of education are caused, Kieran Egan argues, by the fact that we have inherited three major educational ideas, each of which is incompatible with the other two. Is the purpose of education to make good citizens and inculcate socially relevant skills and values? Or is it to master certain bodies of knowledge? Or is it the fulfi...

From the Publisher

The Educated Mind offers a bold and revitalizing new vision for today's uncertain educational system. Kieran Egan reconceives education, taking into account how we learn. He proposes the use of particular "intellectual tools"—such as language or literacy—that shape how we make sense of the world. These mediating tools generate successi...

From the Jacket

The ills of education are caused, Kieran Egan argues, by the fact that we have inherited three major educational ideas, each of which is incompatible with the other two. Is the purpose of education to make good citizens and inculcate socially relevant skills and values? Or is it to master certain bodies of knowledge? Or is it the fulfi...

Kieran Egan, originally from Clonmel, Ireland, has published sixteen academic books. He holds two Ph.D.s in education, from Stanford & Cornell. He is a professor at Simon Fraser University & lives in Vancouver, British Columbia.

other books by Kieran Egan

Teaching as Story Telling
Teaching as Story Telling

Paperback|Mar 15 1989

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Imagination in Teaching and Learning
Imagination in Teaching and Learning

Paperback|Jun 15 1992

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see all books by Kieran Egan
Format:PaperbackDimensions:310 pages, 9 × 6 × 0.7 inPublished:December 1, 1998Publisher:University Of Chicago PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0226190390

ISBN - 13:9780226190396

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Extra Content

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments
Introduction
Part One
1. Three Old Ideas and a New One
2. Mythic Understanding
3. Romantic Understanding
4. Philosophic Understanding
5. Ironic Understanding and Somatic Understanding
6. Some Questions and Answers
Part Two
7. Some Implications for the Curriculum
8. Some Implications for Teaching
Afterword
Bibliography
Index

From Our Editors

The ills of education are caused, Kieran Egan argues, by the fact that we have inherited three major educational ideas, each of which is incompatible with the other two. Is the purpose of education to make good citizens and inculcate socially relevant skills and values? Or is it to master certain bodies of knowledge? Or is it the fulfillment of each student's unique potential? These conflicting goals bring about clashes at every level of the educational process, from curriculum decisions to teaching methods. Egan's analysis is cool, clear, and wholly original, and his diagnosis is as convincing as it is unexpected. Not content with a radical diagnosis, Egan presents us with a new and sophisticated alternative. Egan reconceives education as our learning to use particular "intellectual tools" - such as language or literacy - which shape how we make sense of the world. These mediating tools generate successive kinds of understanding: somatic, mythic, romantic, philosophical, and ironic. As practical as it is theoretically innovative, Egan's account concludes with pra