Narrative anthropology and education

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Set within the backdrop of Helmuth Plessner's notion of «eccentricity», this article presents the main lines of a narrative anthropology. According to this, human beings, besides our biological and cultural nature (in many aspects shared by other animals), also possess condition; that is, we are capable of questioning our nature. For this reason it is not possible to find a «firm and safe» basis that directs our existence in a definitive way. The great pedagogical question, therefore, is not «What are we?» but rather «How can we orientate our life?»; «What meaning do we imbue it with?» In narrative anthropology this question can never be definitively answered. Consequently, a pedagogy that has as its aim the transmission of «the full meaning of life» would have disquieting dogmatic and totalitarian aspects. © Ediciones Universidad de Salamanca.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)101-124
JournalTeoria de la Educacion
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2008


  • Desire
  • Human condition
  • Human nature
  • Meaning of life
  • Narration
  • Pedagogical anthropology
  • Situation


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