What Is Called Teaching?

  • Steven HodgeEmail author
Part of the SpringerBriefs in Education book series (BRIEFSEDUCAT)


This chapter offers a closer examination of Heidegger’s thinking in relation to teaching. His early philosophy suggests an existential analysis of teaching. According to this analysis, teachers may adopt a traditional role and shape their students to conform to official expectations. Alternatively, teachers can challenge accepted roles and make conscious, ‘authentic’ decisions about the way they will engage with learners. Such teaching demonstrates authenticity, encouraging learners to drop stock learner roles and fully open themselves to the learning situation. Authentic teaching and learning opens individuals to new ways of being, but can also be perceived as a threat to the establishment. The later Heidegger’s philosophy suggests that the authentic teacher will be especially attuned to the dangers of instrumental thinking and help learners to recognise and avoid the threat. Heidegger’s body of work also contains direct contributions to pedagogical theory. For instance, he argued that genuine teachers teach only by becoming the foremost of learners in a group. They should not be mere dispensers of information but ‘let’ learning take place by being ahead of students in quest of learning. Here it is important to note that Heidegger was himself a committed teacher. Testimony of his students discussed in this chapter reveals that he was indeed a powerful influence—but that his influence could be overwhelming.


Teaching Reflection Pedagogy Authenticity Relationship 


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Griffith UniversityBrisbaneAustralia

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