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This is surely the largest topic in this whole book and at the same time the most pressing responsibility the schoolteacher has. He or she will certainly be called to account for the moral behaviour of the pupils, and is regularly blamed in the yellow press for the general belief that ‘children no longer know the difference between right and wrong’.

Whatever else morality may be, it certainly is expected to provide an account of this difference. But we carry unnoticingly around with us a huge moral vocabulary compounded of fragments of unintegrated moral theories often devised for forms of conduct from long-gone societies and each variously in irreconcilable conflict with one another. Thus, Aristotle's doctrine of the ‘magnanimous man’ (and his theories of ethics ...

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