Beyond the humanism/posthumanism debate: The educational implications of Said's critical, humane praxis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticles

Abstract

The late Edward Said sought to place critique and, indeed, self-critique at the heart of humanism. While the posthuman critiques surrounding the (im)possibility of humanism in postmodern times tend to focus on human autonomy, rationality, and essentialism, Stephen Chatelier here explores the idea that Said’s writing on humanism could help us shift the focus from issues of ontology towards those of practice. Such a move, he argues, prioritizes the ethico-political aspect of human engagement. Rather than making an attempt to defend Enlightenment or Eurocentric forms of humanism, Chatelier probes two distinct possibilities that arise from Said’s democratic humanism. First, he considers to what extent a construction of humanism as practice can enable us to see critical posthumanism as a form of Saidian humanism. Second, he explores how (post)humanist discourse might continue to be of use in precipitating thinking among educators about ethico-political imperatives of education in an era shaped by complex cultural and political relations and a dominant neoliberal rationality. Copyright © 2018 Board of Trustees | University of Illinois.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)657-672
JournalEducational Theory
Volume67
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2017

Citation

Chatelier, S. (2017). Beyond the humanism/posthumanism debate: The educational implications of Said's critical, humane praxis. Educational Theory, 67(6), 657-672. doi: 10.1111/edth.12278

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