Childhood, Philosophy, and Dialogical Education

(R)evolutionary Essays

Expected to ship: 2024-10-01

Offers both theoretical and practical insights into the dialogue between adults and children as a democratic model for schooling.


Childhood, Philosophy, and Dialogical Educationn explores the history and prospects of democratic, dialogical education, and its promise as an engine of social and cultural evolution, especially in the context of the cultural and social site dedicated to the adult-child encounter: the school. Drawing on three historical narratives—of childhood, of subjectivity (psychohistory), and of education—the author offers the possibility of a form of schooling that fosters democratic sensibilities and teaches direct democracy through actual practice.

David Kennedy is Professor Emeritus of Educational Foundations at Montclair State University. He is the coeditor (with Brock Bahler) of Philosophy of Childhood Today: Exploring the Boundaries and the author of The Well of Being: Childhood, Subjectivity, and Education, also published by SUNY Press, among many other books.


"This work is rooted in a wide and important knowledge and understanding of historical ideas and in the existing literature on philosophy with children. There is a real sense in the text of both provocation and encouragement, such as the core focus on childhood as well as on utopianism. The ideas are examined philosophically in a mature, engaging, and accessible style, and the consistent thread of the dialogical also acts to ensure a cohesiveness to the overall text and arguments offered." — Andrew Peterson, Professor of Character and Citizenship Education, Jubilee Centre for Character and Virtues, University of Birmingham

"Kennedy is a leading expert in philosophy of childhood and dialogic education. This book represents an important addition to, and in some respects, update of his singular body of work." — Maughn Rollins Gregory, Professor of Educational Foundations, Montclair State University