This book provides an authoritative, yet accessible guide to the philosophy of education, its scope, its key thinkers and movements, and its potential contribution to a range of educational concerns. The text offers a balanced view of three key dimensions: first, in giving an equal weight to different styles and modes of philosophy; second, by including past and present perspectives on philosophy of education; and third, in covering both the general “perennial” issues in philosophy and issues of more contemporary concern.
Chapter 31: Physical Education
The Problem of Physical Education
The majority of scholarship in the field of the philosophy of physical education orbits around a single issue. Reid (1996, p. 8) captured the problem neatly when he writes, ‘While “physical” seems to speak of the human body, its nature and functioning (most particularly, in the context of structured forms of movement, physical activities of various sorts, games, gymnastics, and exercises), “education” typically connotes the mind and its development’. This bifurcation is to be understood within the context of the PlatonicCartesian tradition of Western philosophy, in which a distinction is made between the mind and body, and as usually happens in dualisms one aspect is privileged. Some philosophers even question the appropriateness of the term ‘physical education’ since, ...