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ERIC Number: EJ1028534
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2014
Pages: 20
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 40
ISSN: ISSN-0013-1857
"To Give an Example Is a Complex Act": Agamben's Pedagogy of the Paradigm
Meskin, Jacob; Shapiro, Harvey
Educational Philosophy and Theory, v46 n4 p421-440 2014
Agamben's notion of the "paradigm" has far-reaching implications for educational thinking, curriculum design and pedagogical conduct. In his approach, examples--or paradigms--deeply engage our powers of analogy, enabling us to discern previously unseen affinities among singular objects by stepping outside established systems of classification. In this way we come to envision novel groupings, new patterns of connection--that nonetheless do not simply reassemble those singular objects into yet another rigidly fixed set or class. Agamben sees this sort of "paradigmatic understanding" as our richest source of intelligibility. For Agamben the paradigm is ultimately about learning to see again, starting not with already perfectly known and categorized objects (or ideas), but rather with a fresh experience of one individual object and the analogical relations it may have to others, and to novel groupings that may arise. The paradigm is a method, a way in which educators might respond to a wide range of educational challenges. For a paradigmatic relation suspends while exposing, deactivates while revealing, complicates while clarifying. But articulating the enigmatic paradigmatic relation between example and class is far more than a method. It is epistemological (a way of knowing and conception of knowledge), ethical (a fostering of freedom from presupposed categories and reified principles) and ontological (a type of being that exposes the potential of knowing and communicating--their intelligibility and communicability). In these qualities, paradigms exhibit to educators a free, a new use of singularities.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A