Processes of Evil as a Supplement to Citizenship Education

  • Cathryn van KesselEmail author
Part of the Palgrave Studies in Educational Futures book series (PSEF)


What makes a good citizen? What are educators trying to accomplish with “citizenship” education? This chapter engages with a supplement to citizenship educationthrough Alain Badiou’s identification of three processes of evil: betrayal, simulacrum/terror, and disaster. According to Badiou (Ethics: An Essay on the Understanding of Evil. Verso, London, UK, 1993/2001), evil is not something that exists on its own; rather, evil is a failure of the good. He defined evil as the result of humans failing or perverting a truth procedure (i.e., the activity of an emerging truth). Individuals and societies need a set of ethics to help create a world with less evil—to persevere in goodness—despite the established order of things that might discourage them.


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© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of AlbertaEdmontonCanada

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