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  • International Frontiers in Education and Research (C) at UCL Institute of Education, December 11-13, 2015

Paul Standish (UCL Institute of Education)
Naoko Saito (Graduate School of Education, Kyoto University)
Jeremy Rappleye (Graduate School of Education, Kyoto University)

International Frontiers in Education and Research (C) was held in London as a joint course with UCL Institute of Education, December 11-13, 2015.

This is an intensive course “The cultivation of political emotions,” jointly organized by the Graduate School of Education, Kyoto University and UCL Institute of Education.

Extreme violence may be the result or cause of powerful political emotions. Yet, by contrast with such episodes, political emotions may be sustained aspects of a person's outlook, embedded in beliefs and attitudes they hold most dear. Their object may be restricted to political principles or leaders, to the memory of a people’s shared past or expectations for the future. Or it may be more diffuse, part of the fabric of daily life with others. Much theorising addresses the nature and conditions of consent, and the attitudinal demands that consensus makes on individual lives and sensibilities. Against this background Nussbaum's Political Emotions (2013) draws attention to failure to acknowledge the existential and emotional aspects of human transformation. Yet scant space is given to the value of addressing more negative emotions, characterised by and sometimes expressed in dissent. In this course, the practical power of pragmatist philosophy, articulated in relation to feminism, questions the dichotomizations of emotion and reason and serves to provide a different approach to political emotions. This entails questioning the relation between reason and imagination and between the human and the animal. Acknowledgement, attention, and care in relation to such emotions, even when they are discordant, enables democracy not just as a mechanism but as a way of life. It raises the question of their cultivation and education as a valid collective aim and indicator of the good society: they are components in the conversation of justice.



  • Coetzee, John Maxwell. 1997. "The Lives of Animals" (The Tanner Lectures on Human Values, Delivered at Princeton University, October 15 and 16).
  • Lloyd, Genevieve. 1979. “The Man of Reason.” Metaphilosophy, Vol. 10, No. 1: pp. 18-37.
  • Ladson-Billings, Gloria. 1998. “Just what is critical race theory and what's it doing in a nice field like education?” International Journal of Qualitative Studies in Education, Vol. 11, No. 1: pp. 7-24.
  • Nussbaum, Martha. 2013. Political Emotions (Cambridge, Massachusetts: The Belknap Press of Harvard University Press).
  • Standish, Paul. 2009. “Food for Thought: Resourcing Moral Education.” Ethics and Education, Vol. 4, No. 1: pp. 31-42.