HomeΦιλοσοφια: International Journal of Philosophyvol. 38 no. 1 (2009)

Universities and Democratization: Habermas on Education

Danilo S. Alterado

Discipline: Education, Philosophy



This paper is an attempt to explicate Jürgen Habermas’s discourse on education vis-à-vis his political project of a democratized society. Arguably, Habermas sees in the structures and processes inherent in the universities an ideal place for self-reflection and communicative action. Thus, his idea of a university is tied up with the potentials of establishing an emancipated, enlightened society. The agencies of selfreflection hinge with democratic practices and processes, and the facility of communicative action even in a differentiated and specialized learning practices and processes in a bundled lifeworld in the universities boost the prospect of a democratized society. Together with other institutions that promote, enhance, and safeguard avenues of discourses free from domination, university education contributes to the realization of the democratization project.