Marxism, Critical Realism, and Education
Marxist educational theory takes a significant but bedeviled place in the history of educational thought and practice. Like Marxism more broadly, it has ridden the contours of history while having been confounded by its own internal (but historically contingent) conceptual tensions. This is due, in part, to the sheer breadth and incompleteness of Marx’s work which has meant be bequeathed future Marxists and radical educators a living project. Marxism and Marxist educational theory are, and can only be, open to ongoing interpretation and epistemological scrutiny.
It is in the service of a living Marxism that critical realism, as developed by British philosopher Roy Bhaskar (1944–2014), lays claim to be of value to radical theory and practice (Brown et al. 2002). While the term critical realism is known among professional philosophers to refer to various species of “realist” approaches to philosophical inquiry, it is only...
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