live less consumer-dependent lives.” A second feature Dentith’s paper, and one that
merits further study, is the attention she pays to the contribution of ecofeminists. These
scholars, she writes, “draw parallels between the domination of women and the human
domination of nature. Eco-feminists maintain that Western beliefs, attitudes, and
assumptions which have shaped patriarchal patterns impact non-humans and nature.”
In “What Is Education For? One Hope, Four Goals,” Patrick Sawyer picks up on
some of the same issues as he addresses a central yet often unexamined question for
educators highlighted by Gert Biesta. The question is often posed in the form of
identifying and elaborating upon the aim or purpose of education. As understood by
Sawyer, there is one overriding “hope,” namely, subjectification and emancipation, twin
concepts that “by their definition and character, resist the language, process, and
influence of goal setting and attainment.” In addition, there are four macro secondary
goals or purposes identified: vocational passion creation/formation, economic
sustainability, cultural excellence, and global literacy.
Perhaps of particular interest here is Sawyer’s contention that “goal setting and
attainment pre-suppose the formulation of a method, which, if followed, is designed to
achieve a pre-determined end” whereas personal subjectification or growth in self
awareness and emancipation arise spontaneously and organically from the individual
person and not from a predetermined end or formula. What makes this stance of Sawyer
particularly interesting and worthy of further consideration is his view that it is
“important to understand that subjectification is not an intentional compliance or
conformity with society’s pre-conceived ideas of what it means to be human. It is a
person coming to the realization that his or her very presence in the world adds to and
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