Kant’s Lectures on Pedagogy on world tour


  • Jochen Laub
  • Thomas Mikhail


Immanuel Kant; Content Analysis; Philosophy of Education; Global Science Network; General Education


Immanuel Kant is a leading thinker in philosophy, but in educational science, and consequently in the Philosophy of Education, he does not have any significant importance – one might think. For his 300th birthday in 2024, Kant’s collected works will appear in a new edition of the so-called academy edition – including his Lecture on Pedagogy from 1803. In this context, L. Koch and T. Mikhail, who are responsible for the publication of this work, give the first complete overview of all translations. It shows that Kant’s Lectures on Pedagogy have appeared in 18 different foreign languages with 50 first editions.

This is astonishing against the background that in the German-speaking area it is assumed that scholars who deal intensively with Kant’s pedagogy are a “lost bunch” (Fischer, 1998, 125) – especially because of Kant’s complicated language and trains of thought (cf. Guyer/Wood 2020).

Firstly, the article will show how far Kant’s Lectures on Pedagogy has spread worldwide since 1808, only 5 years after its publication in the original. Secondly, the article shows results of a qualitative content analysis of the paratexts (forewords by the editors). The comparative analysis of the framings of German and English editions reveals differences in lines of interpretations of the quality of the text and its relation to Kant’s ethics. It turns out that English-language editors evaluate the Lectures far more positively and link their status to Kant’s genius as a philosopher.