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Tradition and Integrity in Moral Education

Eamonn Callan
American Journal of Education
Vol. 101, No. 1 (Nov., 1992), pp. 1-28
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/1085415
Page Count: 28
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Tradition and Integrity in Moral Education
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Abstract

According to moral traditionalism, allegiance to tradition is central to good moral judgment. Therefore, a necessary aspect of moral education is the cultivation of that allegiance in an environment free of the subversive influence of alien moral ideas. This article offers a philosophical critique of traditionalism and considers how the educational agenda of its proponents should be assessed within the context of a liberal polity. It is argued that traditionalism is based on an arbitrarily restrictive understanding of moral integrity. Furthermore, the goals of education that befit a liberal political morality, and the respect for children's rights that that same morality requires, entail substantial limits on the extent to which traditionalist moral education can be tolerated.

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