Accepting the Inevitability of Politics in the Classroom A Proposal for How to Identify Best Practices in Effective and Inclusive Religious Studies Pedagogy

Main Article Content

Diane Shane Fruchtman
Chan Sok Park


Once we acknowledge that we cannot escape politics in the classroom, it is imperative that we, as instructors, adapt our pedagogy accordingly, with the knowledge that our choices in the classroom will replicate, reinforce, or resist the political status quo. The political embeddedness of religion makes this all the more urgent for instructors of Religious Studies, as we attempt to guide students through explorations of communities, identities, histories, ideologies, and representations of human experience which all have political implications in the present. This article delineates several parameters for crafting our pedagogical initiatives, offering classroom climate considerations to keep in mind while we establish our own best practices. It then offers several suggestions—structural, instructor-focused, and student-focused—of best practices to implement in the Religious Studies classroom so as to achieve optimal learning outcomes for all of our students. Key among our conclusions is that inclusive pedagogy is effective pedagogy in Religious Studies.

Article Details