This book was published by Teachers College Press in early 1999. It is a selection from my artichokes. I had thought, when invited to submit a set of my papers, that it would be difficult choosing from the hundred or so pieces. But I discovered that I hadn't so much written a hundred papers as five papers twenty times each, or perhaps ten ten times each. Anyway, below is the set of contents. (Thanks to A.G. Rud Jr. for pointing out a howling typo. I should offer prizes for such improvements.)

Here are some of the comments that appear on the book cover. Modesty doesn't quite forbid their reproduction here. Modesty?


"Three cheers for this lively collection of essays by one of North America's most respected educators." Philip W. Jackson, University of Chicago..


"Kieran Egan reminds us of the vast possibilities in art, story, and children's minds. It is a real treat to have so many of his fine essays collected in one place." Nel Noddings, Teachers College, Columbia University.


"This provocative book arouses our curiosity, laughter, and ire and inspires us to imagine new educational possibilities." Patricia G. Ramsey, Mount Holyoke College.


"In an age in which so many people wring their hands about the inadequacies of schools, concerns that typically tend to result in constraining programs even further, attention to a more generous conception of mind is to be welcomed. Kieran Egan provides such a conception in his book."

From the Foreword by Elliot W. Eisner, Stanford University


"These provocative essays confirm Kieran Egan's reputation as a writer unafraid to challenge long-held notions of children's thinking and learning. In a brilliant analysis, he questions the concept of children as "concrete thinkers" and recommends discarding social studies from the curriculum. Arguing that most empirical research in education is fruitless because of a particular conceptual confusion, Egan shows how our presuppositions commonly prevent us from thinking effectively about educational issues. Focusing on children's and adolescents' thinking, Egan shows how education must engage children's imaginations. This fascinating text moves from research and theory to practical lesson-planning&emdash;showing, for example, how one can teach punctuation in an imaginatively engaging way. Both authoritative and controversial, this book will prove a stimulating read to anyone who cares about education."


You can see Reviews of the book by clicking here.






FOREWORD by Elliot W. Eisner






1. Literacy and the oral foundations of education

2. Narrative and learning: a voyage of implications

3. Teaching the romantic mind

4 Conceptions of development in education




5. Letting our presuppositions think for us

6. The Arts as "the basics" of education

7. Clashing armies in the curriculum wars

8. Education and socialization: the curriculum wars continued




9. Social Studies and the erosion of education

10. Metaphors in collision: objectives, assembly lines, and stories

11. The analytic and the arbitrary in educational research


ISBN: 0-8077-3807-7 (paper)

ISBN: 0-8077-3808-5 (cloth)

If for some bizarre reason you would like to buy a copy of this book, you may do so by contacting Teachers College Press, in the U.S.A., or The Althouse Press in Canada, or Amazon Books on the WWW.

Return to Home Page