Education provides us with what we lack at birth and require as adults. Nature, men, and things all contribute to our education. Nature’s education is the internal growth of our faculties and organs. The education of men is the use we learn to make of this progress. (155) (Cahn) These are the remarks of a man who has had a significant impact on the educational field. Jean Jacques Rousseau is the man in question. Rousseau is one of those philosophers who has been misrepresented to a large extent. Many people have attacked his concept as being out of date and inapplicable in today’s world.  However, this appears to be paradoxical, given Rousseau was also a major figure in the subject of education. Other approaches based on his idea have been introduced in other disciplines of education if not his method. As a result, one would wonder whether Rousseau has anything to give us. Yes, the answer to such a question is yes. If not his approach, then the concept that underpins it is critical. It’s crucial to remember that Rousseau has received more criticism because people don’t understand why he articulated himself in the way he did. In his philosophy, there are two primary points that stand out. They are the child and nature. Both of them were extremely important in his educational perspective. To understand why he wrote what he wrote, one must first comprehend his background and the context in which he wrote. Thus, in the Introduction, a brief biography of Rousseau and his writings should allow us to discover what events and circumstances influenced him to think and write the way he did. Geneva is a basic Protestant city. His father, a watchmaker, came from a Parisian family and acquired much of his forefathers’ Romanticism, mercurial temperament, and passion for pleasures. Rousseau’s mother, too, despite being the daughter of a clergyman, had a morbid and sentimental inclination. She died shortly after Jean Rousseau was born. (Graves 77, 77, 77, 77, 77, 77 Rousseau was raised by a spoiled aunt who never bothered to correct him when he made a mistake. She utterly failed to instill any moral values in him. His father, who had an equally reckless attitude, exacerbated this predisposition for a lack of self-control. Rousseau’s father would stay with him night after night when he was six years old, reading to him the stupidest most spectacular romances that his wife had left behind. As a result, the child’s strong emotionality, imaginativeness, and precocity were cultivated from a very young age. “After a year or so, the novels were worn out, and Rousseau had to look for other sources of inspiration.” These works left an indelible mark on his personality. They contributed to his sense of heroism and ‘that republican spirit and love of liberty, that arrogant and invincible turn of mind, which rendered me resentful of confinement,’ as he later described it. His lack of control may have begun to turn toward revolution and the collapse of existing civilization in this way. (Graves, no. 78) In the arts, Jean-Jacques Rousseau (1712-1778) was a forerunner of the romantic movement (and literature). The revolution against the established order marked the eighteenth-century period in history known as “The Age of Enlightenment.” The time was also a watershed moment in Europe’s history and identity, and, by extension, philosophy. It was an age that was critical of existing theories, methods, systems, and practices; an age that was petrified with individualistic doctrine that man was free to express himself; an age in which the arts and sciences grew in prominence; and an age whose common trademark was the rejection of authority (of priests and kings), and thus anything that could be recommended by reason or common sense was accepted (John, 2009:221). As a result, the Enlightenment was primarily rationalistic in attitude. During this time, reason triumphed over faith; it was a time when assurance could only be obtained by reason. To put it another way, reason was considered as the only solution to man’s difficulty and perplexity. In the sciences, arts, and education, it was a moment of individual (rather than political) liberty, reformation, and revolution. Curtis and Boultwood agree with Rogers (387-388) that the most obvious characteristics of The Enlightenment were: “its practical and unimaginative character, its hatred of vague enthusiasm, and misty ideas; its determination to apply the test of a severely accurate reason to everything and reject out-right whatever will not stand the test of time; the constant reference in all this, as the court of final appeal to the one undoubted fact was the individ (263-264). Despite the fact that Rousseau was a member,  He aspired to be a reformer who would reform the “reforms.” It’s fair to say that most of the period’s great intellectuals found something about themselves in various ways and perceptions. For example, in his Cogito, ergo sum, Descartes discovered the thinking-self; in his empiricism, Locke discovered the experiencing-self; in his pessimism, Schopenhauer discovered the diminishing-self; and in his “by faith only,” Luther discovered the believing-self. Rousseau, on the other hand, discovered the feeling-self, the one-of-a-kind type of self that feels; the self that is passionate, natural, and emotional; the self that craves freedom and equality with all men (John, 2009:222). In this new finding on self, Rousseau, like Pascal, believes that the heart has its causes. In the philosophical community, Rousseau’s distinctive thought is a source of contention. Despite the fact that he did not attend university and began working at various menial jobs at the age of twelve, the intellectualization that he displayed and lived by eventually became a challenge to the previously established academic and philosophical status quo of his time, and the very thing that shook the foundations of France, Russia, Britain, Germany, and America in particular, as well as the entire world. Plato, Aristotle, Descartes, Voltaire, Schopenhauer, and other professional philosophers pioneered the Enlightenment movement, which was once again forced to be re-examined in light of Rousseau’s mental paradigm.


Rousseau was a prolific writer, a powerful and original thinker whose output fueled the 18th-century French Revolution and compelled Tozer to agree with Sir Henry Maime in the “Introduction” to his 1948 translation of The Social Contract: “The world has not seen more than once or twice in all the course of history a literature which has exercised such prodigious influence over the minds of men, over every causation of thought.” (12) It is necessary to provide a synopsis of Rousseau’s educational ideas before delving into his child-centered schooling. This is so that we can get a better understanding of his philosophy. Emile, Rousseau’s seminal work on education, was published in 1761, bringing his educational ideas to the fore. The publication of the book signaled the start of a new era in education. “My thoughts are not like those of others,” Rousseau declares (1975:15). The book sparked widespread outrage, prompting the Catholic Church to condemn it and order the book’s copies to be publicly burned, as well as the arrest of its author. Rousseau discusses education in Emile in three parts: the natural or negative phase, the social or moral phase, and the civic or political phase. We will not be concerned with the social and political aspects of this research. This is because Rousseau strongly thinks that the natural phase takes precedence over all others, and that the natural phase thus serves as the anchor for the social and political angles. This implies that the social and political phases of education are simply byproducts of the natural stage of education. In light of this, the researcher seeks to assess J.J ROUSSEAU’s educational philosophy.


The study’s major goal is to assess J.J ROUSSEAU’s educational philosophy. The researcher proposed the following sub-objective to aid in the completion of the study:

I To assess J.J. ROUSSEAU’s educational philosophy


ii) To determine the impact of J.J. ROUSSEAU’s educational concept on the educational sector’s growth.


iii) To determine the impact of J.J. ROUSSEAU’s educational philosophy on children’s education.


The researcher devised the following research hypotheses to aid in the execution of the study:

H0:J.J ROUSSEAU’s educational philosophy has had no discernible impact on the educational sector’s expansion.


H1:J.J ROUSSEAU’s educational philosophy has a substantial impact on the educational sector’s growth.


H02:J.J ROUSSEAU’s educational philosophy has had a considerable impact on the educational sector’s evolution.


H2:J.J ROUSSEAU’s educational philosophy has had no discernible impact on the progress of the education system.


The outcomes of the study will be of considerable relevance to the educational sector, and J.J ROUSSEAU’s concept of education will aid in expanding the educational sector’s boundaries in Nigeria. The study will also benefit the philosophy department because it will add to the department’s existing literature. The findings of the study will also be useful to students who plan to pursue a similar topic in the future, since they will serve as a guide for them. Finally, the findings will be of considerable interest to students, teachers, and the general public, as they will contribute to the body of knowledge already available.


The scope of this study includes a critical evaluation of J.J. ROUSSEAU’s educational philosophy, although the researcher encountered various constraints during the research process that limited the scope of the study;

a) RESEARCH MATERIAL AVAILABILITY: The amount of research material available to the researcher is insufficient, restricting the investigation.

b) TIME: The study’s time frame does not allow for broader coverage because the researcher must balance other academic activities and examinations with the study.

c) FINANCE: The funding available for the study project does not allow for a larger scope of coverage due to a lack of resources and the researcher’s other academic obligations.


This research paper is divided into five chapters for easy comprehension. The first chapter is about the introduction, which includes (the study’s history), the statement of the problem, the study’s objectives, research questions, research hypotheses, the study’s importance, and the study’s scope, among other things. The theoretical framework, conceptual framework, and other topics addressing the subject matter are presented in Chapter 2, which is a survey of the linked literature. The third chapter, Research Methodology, discusses the research strategy and methodologies used in the study. The fourth chapter focuses on data gathering, analysis, and presenting of findings. The study’s summary, conclusion, and suggestions are presented in Chapter 5.



The process of assisting learning or the development of knowledge, skills, values, beliefs, and habits is referred to as education. Storytelling, discussion, teaching, training, and direct study are all examples of educational methods. Although most education takes place under the supervision of educators, learners can also educate themselves. Education can occur in both formal and informal settings, and any event that has a formative effect on one’s thoughts, feelings, or actions can be deemed educational. The term pedagogy refers to the teaching methodology. Preschool or kindergarten, primary school, secondary school, and finally college, university, or apprenticeship are frequent formal divisions of education.

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