Exploring thinkers central to the development of the theory and practice of education, pedagogy, learning and change

Click to browse the index for thinkers and innovators


bell hooks on education. Barry Burke assesses the contribution that bell hooks has made to thinking about education and sets this within the context of her biography and work.

Naomi Klein: globalization, capitalism, neoliberalism and climate change. Naomi Klein has probably done more than any other commentator, to raise public understanding of the relationships between capitalism, neoliberalism and climate change. Here we explore her contribution.

Pierre Bourdieu: Habitus, capital, and field. Exploring reproduction in the practice of education. Bourdieu’s exploration of how the social order is reproduced, and inequality persists across generations, is more pertinent than ever. We examine some key lessons for educators and pedagogues. [new]

Basil Yeaxlee, lifelong learning and informal education. A key, but overlooked figure, Basil Yeaxlee wrote the first book on lifelong education; argued that informal education was as significant as formal; and explored the spiritual nature of education. [updated and extended]

Richard Sennett: Class, the new capitalism, craftsmanship, cooperation and cities. Over 50 years Richard Sennett has contributed to our understanding of the experiences of class, capitalism and the life of cities – and our appreciation of Homo faber – humans as makers, users of tools and creators of common life. We explore Sennett’s life and work and reflect on his achievements.

Marie Paneth – Branch Street, The Windemere Children, art and pedagogy. Paneth was a talented painter, art therapist and pedagogue. Her book, Branch Street (1944) is a classic exploration of community-based work with children during the Second World War – and the healing use she made of art both with The Windemere Children (2020) and in later practice was pioneering. In this piece, we explore her work – mostly in the 1940s – and continuing relevance.

Sissela Bok on lying and moral choice in private and public life – an amplification. Robert K. Fullinwider explores and amplifies Sissela Bok’s seminal work: Lying: Moral Choice in Private and Public Life (1978). Lying remains in print today, nearly thirty years after its initial publication, and is widely used in the classroom. Its continuing broad readership pays tribute to the book’s lucidity and good sense. Bok’s work has no peer as a serious treatment of a central but neglected, dimension of moral life.

John Ruskin on education. John Ruskin altered the way we look at art and architecture and was an influential social critic and advocate of economic change and reform. His desire to advance reform and to deepen people’s appreciation of art inevitably brought him to teaching and to education. His work was to have lasting significance. But what did Ruskin advocate? What was special about his approach? Sara E. Atwood explores his contribution.

Richard Henry Tawney, fellowship and adult education. R. H. Tawney was a noted economic historian, democratic socialist and educator. Here we make a brief assessment of his contribution as an adult educationalist – and his strong belief in fellowship.

Click to browse the index for a full listing of thinkers and innovators

Image: Naomi Klein presenta en Madrid su nuevo libro “Esto lo cambia todo: el capitalismo contra el clima” 2015. Adolfo Lujan | flickr ccbyncnd2 licence.