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ERIC Number: EJ1030216
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2014
Pages: 16
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0218-8791
One Size Does Not Fit All: Complexity, Religion, Secularism and Education
Davies, Lynn
Asia Pacific Journal of Education, v34 n2 p184-199 2014
The continuing incidence of extremist acts committed in the name of religion underscores the need to examine the interplay between religion and learning. This article argues for a secular foundation in society and school to protect against religion contributing to conflict and extremism. However, this is not a hard version of secularism, but a dynamic secularism which adapts to different contexts in time and space. A number of myths about secularism are exposed. The article draws on complexity theory to show how religion amplifies conflict, but also to show how a complex adaptive society can accommodate diverse faiths. A comparative perspective across a range of countries and continents reveals highly diverse patterns of religious education, and shows their links to power and nation-building. There are clear dangers of the politicization of religion and of segregation in a plural society. Yet, a complexity approach also warns of blanket global recommendations about the intersection between faith and schooling. Only two basics are posited: first, that there should be transparency and consistency in government policies on religion or secularism, and second, that schooling should promote the critical thinking which enables religious messages to be critiqued and the rights of all upheld.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A