NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
Peer reviewed Peer reviewed
Direct linkDirect link
ERIC Number: EJ1154738
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2017
Pages: 22
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-1063-5734
"Bauchman v. West High School" Revisited: Religious Text and Context in Music Education
Perrine, William Michael
Philosophy of Music Education Review, v25 n2 p192-213 Fall 2017
In 1997 the Tenth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled that school officials at West High School did not violate Rachel Bauchman's constitutional rights by including Christian religious music as part of its curriculum, or by staging school performances at religious sites. Three philosophical questions are investigated in this paper: whether the performance of religious text constitutes a religious practice, the ways in which instructional and performance context can affect the performance of sacred music, and how music teachers can avoid coercion when teaching religious music. Conclusions suggest that music educators must carefully consider the historical and cultural context of texts utilized in choral music. Certain contemporary devotional texts intended primarily for worship may prove problematic in a classroom setting. In addition, the instructional context in which religious music is presented can greatly impact how students understand the music's significance. Music educators should carefully articulate clear pedagogical reasons for staging performances in houses of worship to avoid the appearance of endorsement, and should refrain from asking students to participate in organized worship services. Finally, music educators should be sensitive to the problems religious texts present to individual students, taking responsibility for facilitating a classroom environment that respects a diversity of viewpoints.
Indiana University Press. 601 North Morton Street, Bloomington, IN 47404. Tel: 800-842-6796; Tel: 812-855-8817; Fax: 812-855-7931; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: High Schools
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Utah
Identifiers - Laws, Policies, & Programs: First Amendment
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A