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ERIC Number: EJ1021316
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2013
Pages: 15
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0013-1857
Physical Education as "Means without Ends:" Towards a New Concept of Physical Education
Vlieghe, Joris
Educational Philosophy and Theory, v45 n9 p934-948 2013
This article is concerned with the educational value of raising the human body at school. Drawing inspiration from the work of Giorgio Agamben, I develop a new perspective that explores the possibility of taking the concept of physical education in a literal sense. This is to say that the specific educational content of physical education (in contradistinction to organized sporting life outside school) resides in its concentration on the physical "as such". This is not an obvious path to explore, because defenders of physical education as a rule have to compete against the (dualist) prejudice that this discipline is merely an instrument to train the body or to keep it fit, and that it therefore should not be considered as a serious endeavour. Therefore, more often than not, apologists try to justify the relevance of physical education on the very ground that it is a practice that is concerned with something "beyond" the merely physical that is at stake in movement activity. I argue, however, that this line of thought excludes the possibility of conceiving an alternative approach that relates the concentration on "entirely physical" activities (as opposed to "merely physical" activities) to an experience of potentiality. I develop this idea on the basis of an analysis of repetitive, rhythmical and collective body-exercise (e.g. running in a group or basic calisthenics).
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A