Edited By Stephen G. Parker, Rob Freathy and Leslie J. Francis
17 Religious Education Promoting Identity Formation in the Light of Existential Analysis and Critical Pedagogy
The aim of the chapter is to reflect on how two different theoretical approaches to existential analysis, a movement in psychotherapy and phenomenological philosophy, and the main ideas of critical pedagogy can provide scenarios for Religious Education in schools. The existential analysis is based on Viktor E. Frankl’s concepts of purpose of life and how people can find their value as active contributors, as subjects of life. The critical theory is based on Habermas’ theory of knowledge-constitutive human interests, and concepts of ‘lifeworld’ and ‘communicative action’. First, the main principles of both of the theoretical approaches are presented. When introducing the critical theory, the chapter also refers to Paolo Friere, Wilfred Carr, and Stephen Kemmis, who have applied critical theory to education. The major themes reflected on are as follows: how these theories can be applied in curriculum construction when promoting religious and value literacy and how they support students’ identity formation in Religious Education. Finally, the chapter presents a summary of what features these theories provide when supporting students’ identity formation in Religious Education. ← 365 | 366 →
How to make Religious Education meaningful, relevant and inspiring for students’ lives is a big challenge in many countries. The aim of this chapter is to reflect on how existential analysis, a movement in psychotherapy based on phenomenological philosophy, can provide an ideological basis for the pedagogy of Religious Education in schools. Another aim of the chapter is to analyse how critical pedagogy...
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