chapter  14
12 Pages

MORAL LEARNING

In order to understand moral education, it is necessary to recapitulate some of the factors that are important in learning.

1 Humans are social animals: living in society is a requirement of their own well-being. It is not, however, sufficient because people need to live together in ways that promote flourishing; they need, arguably, to pursue a conception of the good for human life. In post-Enlightenment societies it is a commonplace to say that the achievement of autonomy is necessary for individual well-being and self-respect. Some advocates of autonomy do not see it being tied to any particular conception of the common good; these are strong autonomists. Weak autonomists think that autonomy is compatible with at least a minimal conception of the common good, if this is seen as a finite disjunctive set of aims and values that a society regards as promoting a viable conception of human flourishing.1 In this chapter it will be assumed that the achievement of individual autonomy in the weak sense will be one of the main aims of moral education.2