Lost in wonder: a response to Schinkel’s ‘deep' wonder in education

Mountbatten-O'Malley, E (2024) 'Lost in wonder: a response to Schinkel’s ‘deep' wonder in education.' Journal of Philosophy of Education. ISSN 0309-8249

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Official URL: https://doi.org/10.1093/jopedu/qhae026


In this paper, I aim to carve out some points of clarification with regards to the plausible role of ‘wonder’ in education. I do so, largely, in unison with the general intention, values and interest in how the concept of wonder might have a place in education. Most of us who work in education want to provide valuable experiences for our students, and we want them to be driven by intrinsic values such truth and recognition of the dignity of human existence. However, whilst I echo many of the sentiments espoused by advocates of the utility and ethical dimensions for engaging with conceptions of wonder, I’d like to suggest that some recent developments, in particular, Schinkel’s argument that ‘deep’ wonder has a ‘fundamental’ role in education is misconceived. This is, I suggest, because any concept deployable within educational spaces (formal or informal) must pay due to regard to the conceptual constraints of the concept of ‘education’; that is, primarily, they must attend to the role of ‘learning’. Schinkel’s proposals are, I suggest, vulnerable to a critique of sentimentalism, excessive romanticism, even nonsense. As such, it seems to offer little in terms of practical import for educators. As I will suggest, if we are to take ‘wonder’ seriously in educational contexts, we must pay attention to the very purpose of wonder as an epistemic emotion, namely: aiming for knowledge and understanding; getting there requires sensitivity to practical know-how and conceptual competence.

Item Type: Article
Divisions: School of Education
Identification Number: https://doi.org/10.1093/jopedu/qhae026
Date Deposited: 26 Mar 2024 11:54
Last Modified: 13 Jun 2024 13:53
URI / Page ID: https://researchspace.bathspa.ac.uk/id/eprint/16176
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