Evil, Existential Terror, and Classroom Climate

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


Ernest Becker noted that, ironically, the worst evils are created in the process of us trying to escape from evil. Humans commit terrible acts that arise from our fight against the evil of death. This chapter discusses how aspects of our curriculum and pedagogy are shaped by attempts to escape anxiety about our own mortality. There is a particular focus on the profession of teaching as an immortality project (potentially helpful and harmful), as well as how we encounter resistance to alternative viewpoints arising from worldview threat.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of AlbertaEdmontonCanada

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