Introduction: Reminders Assembling a Picture of Paul Smeyers
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To introduce this volume, we offer a picture of Paul Smeyers as a researcher, one who clearly fits the description of the excellent researcher of the research-intensive university today. But the metrics and descriptors used to define research in this way do not capture what is educational in Paul’s educational philosophy, his approach to it, or what it has contributed to the field. Taking a selection of the Wittgensteinian Leitmotifs that have recurred throughout his work over the last four decades, we provide an (admittedly, wilfully selective) account of his work, its formative influences, and enduring relevance. We situate this within the wider context in which philosophy and history of education exist today, in a university system much changed since Paul’s own doctoral study, to pave the way for considerations that follow of the various ways in which the time and space of and for research might be recollected, understood, and defended.
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