Fictionalism confronts the dual epistemological nature of education. In this book, Johan Dahlbeck argues that all education, at bottom, concerns a striving for truth initiated through fictions. This foundational aporia is then interrogated and made sense of via Hans Vaihinger’s philosophy of ‘as if’ and Spinoza’s peculiar form of exemplarism. Using a variety of fictional examples, Dahlbeck investigates the different dimensions of educational fictionalism, from teacher exemplarism to the basic educational fictions necessary for getting started in education in the first place. Fictionalism will be a valuable resource for anyone interested in the philosophical foundations of education.

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Johan Dahlbeck, Ph.D., is Associate Professor of Education at Malmö University, Sweden. He has published several monographs and articles in different areas of philosophy of education, including Education and Free Will (Routledge, 2018) and Spinoza: Fiction and Manipulation in Civic Education (Springer, 2021).
Abbreviations and Note on Editions Used
 Introduction: A Truth Concealed Beneath a Beautiful Lie
 1 Emotional Manipulation and Affective Influence: A Philosophical Account
 2 Hans Vaihinger’s ‘As If’ and the Promotion of Educational Fictions
 3 Taking a Cue from Spinoza’s Exemplars
 Conclusion: The End of the Beginning
 Introduction: Three Examples, Three Lessons (in Educational Fictionalism)
 4 Learning from Satan’s Mistake: Epistemological Restrictions and Imaginative Openings
 5 Recollecting Mr. Möller’s Transformative Gesture: Looking Back to Move Ahead
 6 Popular Images of Teachers: Control Freaks or Lovers of the Unknown?
 Conclusion: These Examples Are Nothing but Fictions
 Introduction: The Beginning of the End
 7 Educational Fictionalism and the Teaching of Truth Disguised as Lies
 Conclusion: Acting ‘As If’ We Knew Where We Were Going
Researchers in philosophy of education, graduate and post-graduate students in education and educational theory, members of the general public interested in philosophy and education.
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