• Learning as Transcendence: The Solution to the Learner's Paradox in Plato and Merleau-Ponty

      Hoff, Shannon; Sheridan, Joanna; Institute for Christian Studies (Institute for Christian Studies, 2015-05)
      This thesis attempts to resolve the learner's paradox on the basis of Merleau-­Ponty's insights in the Phenomenology of Perception by showing that the paradox is misleading in at least two important ways: it presumes that our "knowing" relation to the world operates in the form of explicit knowledge, whereas really we mainly operate on the basis of a pre-­reflective familiarity with various things; and, it presumes that we are "in charge" of our learning, whereas really learning is part of the ongoing coupling of self and world. The first chapter offers a reading of Plato's Meno that argues that Plato implicitly offers a solution to the paradox that is compatible with Merleau-­Ponty's. The second chapter explicates Merleau-­Ponty's own version of the learner's paradox. The third chapter criticizes the learner's paradox from the Meno using Merleau-­Ponty's insights. The conclusion offers a few ideas on what shape teaching should take, given the foregoing account of learning, that are drawn from John Locke's "Some Thoughts Concerning Education."