Neoliberalism and neoconservatism are two ideologies that currently plague education. The individualistic free-market ideology of neoliberalism and the unbridled nationalistic exceptionalism associated with neoconservatism often breed a narrowed, overstandardized curriculum and a hyper-testing environment that discourage critical intellectual practice and democratic ideas. Dewey’s philosophy of education indicates that he understood that education is political and can be undemocratic. Dewey’s holistic pragmatism, combined with aspects of social reconstructionism, called for a philosophical movement that favors democratic schooling. This paper defines neoliberal and neoconservative ideologies and makes a case for including more critique within teacher preparation programs, what Dewey and other educationists referred to as developing a significant social intelligence in teachers. Critical studies embedded within teacher education programs are best positioned to counter the undemocratic forces prevalent in the ideologies of neoliberalism and neoconservatism. My conclusions rely on Dewey’s philosophy from his work Democracy and Education.

Response to this Article

Dan Sarofian-Butin, Democracy Dies in Dualisms