A religious education otherwise? An examination and proposed interruption of current British practice

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JournalJournal of philosophy of education
DatePublished - Feb 2010
Issue number1
Volume44
Number of pages22
Pages (from-to)23-44
Original languageEnglish

Abstract

This paper examines the recent shift towards the dominance of the study of philosophy of religion, ethics and critical thinking within religious education in Britain. It explores the impact of the critical realist model, advocated by Andrew Wright and Philip Barnes, in response to prior models of phenomenological religious education, in order to expose the ways in which both approaches can lead to a distorted understanding of the nature of religion. Although the writing of Emmanuel Levinas has been used in support of the critical realist model by Wright, I will consider how his and Slavoj Žižek's writings on the nature of religion might challenge the dominance of the critical realist approach and provide a conceptual framework through which it might be possible to develop an alternative approach to religious education that attends to the complexity, ambiguity and demanding nature of engaging with religious traditions.

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