The manner in which we variously come to an understanding of our world presents problems for us all, but the unified method by which we ought best to acquire such knowledge represents the particular problem of contemporary education. This important book seeks to explore some of the underlying practises and assumptions that go to produce and sustain both such sets of activities.
As a result of its concerns with the social organization of knowledge at all levels, the sociology of education has become a central form of much contemporary sociological theory. All the papers in this collection are formulations of a ‘reflexive’ method of theorizing within sociology of education. This is a mode of address, deriving partly from social phenomenology, which seeks to display the grounds of the theorists’ speech as itself an essential feature of any informative dialogue. Major themes in education and in sociology are considered in this way, including the social form of rationality, the constitution of curricula, normative beliefs about Learning, the nature of literary study as liberal education and the character of scientific knowledge in the social world.