Happiness and education: troubling students for their own contentment

Gibbs, Paul ORCID logoORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-9773-3977 (2015) Happiness and education: troubling students for their own contentment. Time & Society, 24 (1) . pp. 54-70. ISSN 0961-463X [Article] (doi:10.1177/0961463X14561780)

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Currently higher education strategies seem to concentrate on the expedient, developing skills that can secure employment in the world of work. Following Dreyfus and Spinosa (2003), this may have immediate advantages, but in totalising pedagogic practices it may restrict our openness to people and to our own contentment with ourselves. Valuable as this may be as a way to satisfy politico-economic policy imperatives, it strays from education as an edifying process where personal development represents, through the facing up to distress and despair, an unsettling of our developing identity and a negation of our immediate desire satisfaction. Such an unsettling is not intended to give pleasure or satisfaction in the normative way in which the imperative of happiness has been used in student satisfaction surveys or in the wider societal context that this totalisation represents (Ahmed 2010). What I propose for higher education is not a dominant priority to feed the happiness for others but a mission to personal contentment revealed through realising student potentialities to them and so recognising their limitations as part of seeking an attunement to contentment.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: Published online before print December 12, 2014
Keywords (uncontrolled): Heidegger, Rousseau, contentment, anxiety, troubling
Research Areas: A. > Centre for Education Research and Scholarship (CERS)
A. > School of Health and Education
Item ID: 13877
Useful Links:
Depositing User: Paul Gibbs
Date Deposited: 21 Nov 2014 14:38
Last Modified: 29 Nov 2022 22:57
URI: https://eprints.mdx.ac.uk/id/eprint/13877

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