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Kierkegaard and Dewey - Essay Example

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He argues that democratic cultures for example depend on psychological and moral beliefs, even if not consciously motivated by them, as…
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Kierkegaard and Dewey
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Kierkegaard and Dewey

Dewey then gives an example of religion; how religion can have a lasting and deep impact on the course of a nations history. Religion or a certain set of ideas can control peoples feelings and beliefs, and that is not any less of a control than that of political oppression.
Culture is also determines what elements of human nature dominate it, which have resulted in the belief that one aspect of human nature is the determining factor of human society. This is confusing the effect with the cause, as it is a societys culture that determines which aspect of human nature dominates according to Deweys argument.
So the basic idea of Deweys first chapter is that if political freedom is to be maintained it is through culture and not through the individuals, as they are themselves motivated and to a degree "controlled" by culture.
The exaggeration of one aspect of human nature as the sole motive behind human behavior is itself culture driven; this is well supported by historical facts. For every age gives rise to a motive of behavior that accords with its cultural needs. And the example Dewey gives is England during the industrial revolution; as the economic situation was intense it gave rise to the belief in a sole human motivator that is in harmony with this economical situation.
2- In chapter 2, Dewey discusses the differences that lie within the same society, how they might affect society and how they are not an objection to his theory of cultural domination over human behavior within society. In this chapter he concludes that: "No estimate of the effects of culture upon the elements that now make up freedom begins to be adequate that does not take into account the moral and religious splits that are found in our very make-up as persons. The problem of creation of genuine democracy cannot be successfully dealt with in theory or in practice save as we create intellectual and moral integration out of present disordered conditions." This perhaps sums up ... Read More
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