Living Reference Work Entry

Encyclopedia of Educational Philosophy and Theory

pp 1-5

Date: Latest Version

Allegedly Conservative: Revisiting Wittgenstein’s Legacy for Philosophy of Education


Conservative; Epistemology; Practice; Practitioner; Researcher; Wittgensteinian legacy

In section 124 of the Philosophical Investigations, Wittgenstein writes: “Philosophy may in no way interfere with the actual use of language; it can in the end only describe it. For it cannot give it any foundation either. It leaves everything as it is.” Given the unity of language-and-world and of what-we-say-and-do at the level of the language-game, it is easy to see how it gave occasion to the reproach of conservatism – particularly in education and philosophy of education where the rhetoric of change has always been fashionable. Philosophy is all caught up with how we think about ourselves; thinking and reflection belong to our life. Thus our life is at least partly correctly characterized as permeated by thinking and hence changed by thinking. How can coming to understand something not make a difference? According to The New Oxford Dictionary of English, as an adjective “conservative” mea ...

This is an excerpt from the content