Edited By Ewa Nowak, Dawn Schrader and Boris Zizek
Part II: Educating Competencies
Part II Educating Competencies Matthias Scharlipp Experiencing Freedom and Democracy at School: Konstanz Method of Dilemma Dis- cussion1 Abstract: The ambitious ideas of freedom and democracy immediately raise questions about the moral and democratic competencies of society’s protagonists in everyday life, competencies that enable them to transfer their own perspectives of liberty and freedom (respect for human dignity, tolerance, justice and reason) into corresponding behavior. It is exactly this consistency and integrity of thinking, speaking, and acting that is the aim of the Konstanz Method of Dilemma Discussion. Keywords: freedom, democracy, democratic competencies, Konstanz Method of Dilemma Discussion Experiencing Freedom and Democracy A free and democratic society is not just a matter of elections and votes; it is also a matter of wide open space for conflicting perspec- tives and interests, vivid public deliberation and debate, and “gov- ernment by (and after) discussion.” Freedom and democracy are molded by constant mental dispute. Its essence is the conflict of ar- guments (Schmidt-Bleibtreu et al., 2008). ________________ 1 Opening statement at the symposium “Experiencing Freedom and Democracy at School: Konstanz Method of Dilemma Discussion”. At the international conference “Can Morality be Taught? Is it a Competence?”, 27–31 July, 2009 (University of Konstanz). 164 Matthias Scharlipp This understanding of freedom or liberty does not imply some kind of petty bourgeois liberty secured by night watchmen – “what matters most is our own undisturbed peace and quiet” – but a dy- namic and sometimes also straining liberty that includes the cost of practical tolerance. It imposes...
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