A new book, edited by Brian Gates, has recently been published – Religion and Nationhood: Insider and Outsider Perspectives on Religious Education in England. This has the potential to make a valuable contribution to ongoing debates in RE.
The book is available for £70 inc p&p from University of Cumbria Online Store http://store.cumbria.ac.uk
The press release summary follows:
Religion is both too dangerous and too important to be left to any single belief community, academic association or political group. The challenges of secularity and competing belief systems require attention within the curriculum of every state school. The authors of this volume, more than thirty authoritative practitioners and scholars, illuminate the context for religion in public education nationally and globally. Their principal focus is on Religious Education in England, with its distinctive matrix of Christianity, plurality of beliefs and secularity. The complementary attention to RE provision in eight other countries and within Europe is revealing of each and a source for comparative comment on the ‘English approach’. Religion is understood universally as referring to the deepest meanings which we have generated to live with, both individually and collectively. The peculiarity of England with a constitutional monarchy and established church is identified as an enabling feature for understanding, inclusivity and openness rather than separation and mutual ignorance, but that RE is threatened by government inattention.
Brian Gates: Introduction
Brian Gates: The Religious Education Council of England & Wales – Julie Grove: Agreed Syllabuses, SACREs and their national association – Alan Brown: A Church of England perspective – Peter Ward: A Roman Catholic perspective – Sarah Lane Cawte: A Free Churches perspective
Other Religious perspectives:
Angela Gluck: Jewish – Nasima Hassan: Muslim – Rasamandala Das: Hindu – Ranvir Singh: Sikh – Phra Nicholas Thanissaro: Buddhist – Stephen Vickers: Baha’l – Harshad Sanghrajka: Jain – Malcom M Deboo: Zoroastrian – James Holt: Mormon – Mike Stygal: Pagan.
Richy Thompson: A Humanist perspective
Paul Weller: The emerging inter faith context in society & RE – Dennis Bates: Key exponents in developing RE theory & practice – Barbara Wintersgill/Alan Brine: Government national agencies for inspection & curriculum development in RE – John Keast: Assessing Achievement in RE – John Gay: The training of RE teachers and the role of the Church college trusts in supporting them – Jeff Astley: Researching the field of Christian Education – Bernd Schröder: A perspective from Continental Europe.
Anna Halafoff: Australia – Bruce Maxwell/Sivane Hirsch: Canada – Asher Maoz: Israel – Vishalache Balakrishnan: Malaysia – Tatyana Tsyrlina-Spady/Marc Wisnosky: Russia – René Ferguson: South Africa – Sahin & Yildiz Kizilabdullah: Turkey – Emile Lester: USA.
Brian Gates: Concluding Reflections