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Religion – where to draw the line in school: The cases of Sweden and India
Karlstad University, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (starting 2013), Department of Political, Historical, Religious and Cultural Studies (from 2013).ORCID iD: 0000-0002-5081-0154
2017 (English)Conference paper, Oral presentation only (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Religion as a school subject – Religious Education or RE – is handled differently in various, national contexts (see Davis and Mirosh- nikova, 2013). This paper is a dialogue between two different sys- tems of RE: those found in Swedish and Indian schools. Letting the two paradigms meet reveals particularities of each, both regarding ways of understanding religion in general and religion in school in particular (cf. Niemi, 2016). Both countries are secular, and only denominational schools have been studied. The paper focuses par- ticularly on what is allowed to do in the classroom with regards to religion. Where is the line drawn and why. Empirical data in- clude classroom observations and teacher interviews from India. The results show that secularism is interpreted differently in the two countries. The impact of Protestant Christianity, specifically Lutheranism, is evident in Swedish RE (cf. Buchardt, 2015; Kittel- mann Flensner, 2015; Dalevi, 2015, 4). On the face of it, India doesn’t have religious education (cf. Mahmood, 2013) at all. Looking closer, it can be found, but perhaps focusing on doings rather than ‘knowledge of’. The approach to religions is very inclusive, to the point where a common core of all religions is emphasized. The Swedish context highlights ‘knowledge of’, but avoids doings. The other con- text emphasizes doings, but avoids other areas. Both systems of RE offer particular opportunities and suffer difficulties in dealing with today’s globalized world (cf. Kittelmann Flensner, 2015; Kumar and Oesterheld, 2007); both lead to different ways of having dialogue in the RE classroom.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2017.
National Category
Didactics Religious Studies
Research subject
Religious Studies and Theology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-70221OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kau-70221DiVA, id: diva2:1264865
Conference
14th Nordic Conference on Religious Education (NCRE 2017), June 12-15, 2017, University of Eastern Finland, Joensuu, Finland
Available from: 2018-11-21 Created: 2018-11-21 Last updated: 2019-05-23Bibliographically approved

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CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

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Citation style
  • apa
  • harvard1
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf