Lynn Fendler

Lynn Fendler was my Ph.D. advisor at Michigan State University and the chairperson of my dissertation committee. Well versed in the history of ideas in both the continental and analytic traditions, Lynn’s work makes use of historical and philosophical approaches to address foundational issues in teacher education and education research. Her doctoral courses (e.g., Philosophy in Education, Continental Theories) and her Critical Studies reading group–a weekly seminar attended by doctoral students and faculty–were some of the most nourishing intellectual adventures I ever encountered as a Ph.D. student.

When teaching is defined in a narrow way as the professional activities as a person leading a class, then teaching theories tend to limit themselves to instrumental questions, which construe teaching as a relatively unimportant phenomenon–more like tinkering than rocket science.

– LYNN FENDLER, Teaching Theories (2014)

There is nothing Lynn has published that I haven’t enjoyed reading, and there is nothing she has cooked that I didn’t enjoy eating. However, if/when forced to choose a few of my favorite examples of her scholarship I would probably select her explication of the ideas of Michel Foucault and their relationship to educational thought (Fendler, 2010), her imaginative and provocative philosophical dialogue between “Edwin” and “Phyllis” (Fendler, 2011), her book chapter “Teaching theories,” (Fendler, 2014), and her articles on the magic of psychology in teacher education (Fendler, 2012) and the problem of community (Fendler, 2006).

Place of Work | Michigan State University
Title | Professor, Department of Teacher Education
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