Saturday, September 26, 2015

Smith: Formation vs. Information

“[This book] is an invitation to re-vision Christian education as a formative rather than just an informative project.” (18) In particular, Smith suggests that Christian scholars should be considering how education informs what Smith calls the hearts, passions and desires of students. But his footnote contains an important point: “I’m not arguing that we love, and therefore we need not know; rather, we love in order to know.” (3n2) For that matter, Smith’s project includes raising the stakes of Christian education. It is becoming increasingly clear that Smith’s book is important for the Christian academic community to consider, even at my early stage of reading. I am also compelled by his idea of a “philosophical anthropology,” with a nod to phenomenology: the importance of desire and desire’s targets. This intersects with my own work and my own life, too (as one of my colleagues recently quoted me as saying: “But I want that iPad!”).

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