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Document Details :

Title: An Ethical Dilemma
Subtitle: Religious Fundamentalism and Peace Education
Author(s): BENNETT, Juliet
Journal: Ethical Perspectives
Volume: 18    Issue: 2   Date: 2011   
Pages: 197-228
DOI: 10.2143/EP.18.2.2116810

Abstract :
Although a modus operandi throughout history, the passing down of beliefs and values from parent to child is a practice that must now be challenged. Drawing a connection between fundamentalist religious beliefs and inter-generational violence, this paper examines an ethical dilemma that lies at its crux: on the one hand, the peaceful intentions of fundamentalist believers, and on the other a number of violent consequences for individuals, society, and the world. Applying interdisciplinary religious and peace theory scholarship to the case of Christian fundamentalism in Australia, a number of intertwining issues surrounding religion and education are explored. Should religion be taught to children? What is the difference between indoctrination and education? Is some enculturation desirable? Who decides? Do children have a right to choose their own religion? Do parents have a right to teach them theirs? Is indoctrination avoidable? Is neutrality of the teacher attainable? Does a liberal society have a right not to tolerate the intolerant? How might these complex paradoxes be addressed from a philosophical and peace education perspective?

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