Learning from the Other

Levinas, Psychoanalysis, and Ethical Possibilities in Education

By Sharon Todd

Subjects: Philosophy Of Education
Series: SUNY series, Second Thoughts: New Theoretical Formations
Paperback : 9780791458365, 188 pages, October 2003
Hardcover : 9780791458358, 188 pages, November 2003

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Table of contents


Introduction: Learning from the Other: A Question of Ethics, a Question for Education

1. "Bringing More than I Contain": On Ethics, Curriculum, and Learning to Become

2. Being-for or Feeling-for? Empathic Demands and Disruptions

3. A Risky Commitment: The Ambiguity and Ambivalence of Love

4. Strangely Innocent? Guilt, Suffering, and Responsibility

5. Listening as an Attentiveness to "Dense Plots"

Postscript: Where Are Ethical Possibilities?




How does ethics influence the myriad ways we engage difference within educational settings?


Learning from the Other presents a philosophical investigation into the ethical possibilities of education, especially social justice education. In this original treatment, Sharon Todd rethinks the ethical basis of responsibility as emerging out of the everyday and complex ways we engage difference within educational settings. She works through the implications of the productive tension between the thought of Emmanuel Levinas and that of Sigmund Freud, Melanie Klein, Judith Butler, Cornelius Castoriadis, and others. Challenging the idea that knowledge about the other is the answer to questions of responsibility, she proposes that responsibility is rooted instead in a learning from the other. The author focuses on empathy, love, guilt, and listening to highlight the complex nature of learning from difference and to probe where the conditions for ethical possibility might lie.

Sharon Todd is Associate Professor of Education at York University and the editor of Learning Desire: Perspectives on Pedagogy, Culture, and the Unsaid.