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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:The classroom, an inadequate mechanism for advancing diversity via religion education in the South African context
Author:McDonald, ZahraaISNI
Periodical:Journal for the Study of Religion (ISSN 1011-7601)
Geographic term:South Africa
religious education
cultural pluralism
government policy
Abstract:South Africans are religious, but know little about religions other than their own. In 2003, in the interest of instilling respect for religious diversity, the South African Department of Education issued a national policy aiming to recognise and advance religious diversity through teaching and learning in public schools. Embracing religious diversity in the classroom, however, is challenging. After a brief review of the policy and a discussion of why and how it was proposed, this article examines whether religion education in public schools helps to advance respect for diversity. The author finds that the policy does not reach its goals. One reason for this is that teachers often have a mono-religious background and, in the absence of teacher training, are unable or unwilling to confront their fear, prejudice and bias towards religions other than their own. Bibliogr., sum. [ASC Leiden abstract]