The virtue of taking responsibility

De Ruyter, D.J. (2002) The virtue of taking responsibility. Educational Philosophy and Theory, 34(2), pp. 25-35. (doi: 10.1111/j.1469.5812.2002.tb00283.x)

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The importance of taking responsibility for the well-being of others or responding to the needs of others, be it concrete persons nearby, anonymous persons or (in)animus objects, is beyond dispute. However, people seem to live in an age where it is not common to look after the well-being of others, at least that is the message one gets from the media as well as from research. Statistics show that delinquency is growing, especially juvenile delinquency and people seem to be less interested in each other, let alone in each other's well-being. The author believes that it is possible to educate children towards persons who feel they should respond to the needs of others and should attribute to others' well-being. Before describing how to teach children to take responsibility, the author wants to give more clarity about the meaning of "responsibility" and about the capacities and dispositions of a responsible person. These topics are addressed in the next two sections. These sections will also show that it is not only possible that people take too little responsibility, but also that they take it too much. To substantiate this evaluation, however, the notion of taking too much responsibility needs to be elucidated, which will be the focus of the fourth section. The final section offers a general description of educating children to take responsibility, which is based on the described capacities and dispositions of a virtuous responsible person. (Contains 4 notes.)

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:UNSPECIFIED
Authors: De Ruyter, D.J.
College/School:College of Social Sciences > School of Education
Journal Name:Educational Philosophy and Theory

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