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Robert E. Carter.

Toronto, Univer-sity of Toronto Press.
242pp, cloth, $27.50 ; paper, $10.00.
ISBN 0-8020-5640-7 ; 0-8020-6540-6


Reviewed by Donald M. Santor.

Volume 12 Number 6
1984 November

During the past few years, thousands of books and articles have been written on moral and values education. Most of them have been concerned with approaches, methods, and materials; far too few with philosophy. Dimensions in Moral Education is a significant contribution to the philosophy of moral education. The author, Robert Carter, is a professor of philosophy at Trent University in Peterborough, Ontario. He clearly demonstrates that moral education, like education itself, must rest on a philosophical base.

In the early part of the book, the author acknowledges, criticizes, and then builds on the contribution of Lawrence Kholberg. In the later part, he goes far beyond Kholberg by focusing on the value of the person. He draws on existentialist thought and plots a course for moral education that lies between moral relativism and moral absolutism or, to use the author's metaphor, between myopia and 20/20 vision. Professor Carter provides a framework for the moral educator who is continuously hard pressed to answer the nagging questions, "What should I teach?" and "How should I teach it?". The reader may not agree with the author's position or conclusions, but they are not chipped in stone; in fact he advocates an on-going review and revision.

Dimensions in Moral Education is a thoroughly documented and scholarly study. An author and subject index enhance its use as a reference book. A lucid and engaging style make it a delight to read. Above all, it is stimulating and provocative.

Donald M. Santor, London Board of Education, London, ON.
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