Dewey, Heidegger and the Challenge to Cartesian Metaphysics. Education as Living Forward

  • Vasco D'Agnese


In this paper, I stage a comparison between two thinkers who, at first sight, may appear far removed from each other, namely, Dewey and Heidegger, discussing their challenge to Cartesian metaphysics. I make my point by locating the analysis in the contemporary educational debate and the necessity to overcome the subject-object split, which still haunts much of the current educational theories and practices. Specifically, I analyse the critique both Dewey and Heidegger put at the core of what may be considered the pivotal feature of Cartesian metaphysics, that is, the self-sufficient, ego-logical, enclosed Cartesian subject. Along the way, I also wish to argue that such a subject is also the—hidden— ground for what seems to be the current dominant educational discourse, that is, the actual testing and efficiency culture dominating educational landscape.