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Reconstruction, Critical Accommodation or Business as Usual? Challenges of Criticisms of the World Religions Paradigm to the Design of Teaching Programmes in the Study of Religions

In: Method & Theory in the Study of Religion
Author: Wanda Alberts1
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  • 1 ITHRW, Religious Studies Unit, Appelstrasse 11A, 30167 Hannover, Germany
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Abstract

This article discusses the challenge of criticisms of the world religions paradigm to the design of teaching programmes in the academic Study of Religions, in general and with a particular focus on didactics-related courses as part of teacher training programmes. It uses the design of a particular Bachelor programme at a German university as an example for the general challenge of teaching about religion in an emancipatory framework that critically reflects its own presuppositions, both at university and school levels. Taking seriously recent criticisms of the world religions paradigm, it is argued, involves a shift of focus from the communication of supposedly given knowledge about religions to the communication of critical competences in analysing different types of discourse about religion, religions or “world religions.”

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