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Education, Religion, and the Common Good Advancing a Distinctly American Conversation About Religion's Role in Our Shared Life

by Martin E. Marty

  • ISBN: 9780787950330
  • ISBN10: 0787950335

Education, Religion, and the Common Good Advancing a Distinctly American Conversation About Religion's Role in Our Shared Life

by Martin E. Marty

  • List Price: $25.95
  • Binding: Hardcover
  • Edition: 1
  • Publisher: John Wiley & Sons Inc
  • Publish date: 09/01/2000
  • ISBN: 9780787950330
  • ISBN10: 0787950335
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Description: Of all the voices commenting about American religion today, none is more credible or better known than that of historian Martin E. Marty. Most recently, he has become identified with the topic of "public religion": which is to say, the question of the proper role of religion in our shared life as a republic. This topic of central importance to the American future has to date generated lots of noise -- in the form of platitudes, stereotypes, name-calling, and distortion of important issues -- but little serious examination. This volume represents the second in a pair of volumes published by Jossey-Bass that will explore the promise and peril of public religion. Intended not as the last word on the subject, but as an invitation to a national conversation, these two volumes provide a guided tour of public religion in America, even-handedly exploring the role religion has played, is playing, and could play in two aspects of our shared life: our life as citizens and political actors, and the education and formation of our young people.

In Education, Religion and the Common Good, Marty explores the proper role of religion in the educational institutions -- from kindergarten through graduate school -- responsible for shaping the next generation for enlightened citizenship. Drawing upon a series of conversations he hosted among educators and religious leaders, Marty draws a nuanced picture of the interrelationship between religious and educational concerns at all levels of schooling. He demonstrates just how necessarily fuzzy the boundaries are between primary, secondary and higher education when one views them as agents in forming both human character and participation in our shared life. Heacknowledges that our logic about what is appropriate changes with the age of the student, taking into account the fact that small children tend to fuse belief and learning, where college students are better able to make critical discriminations. But he nonetheless argues strongly that the proper study of religion is a positive good, even at the elementary levels, if for no other reason than that no child or young adult can avoid encounters that challenge his or her beliefs in our pluralistic culture -- and that such encounters are more likely to contribute to our society's health if they are educated encounters.

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