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Zimbabwe Journal of Educational Research

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The Religious Dimension to Intercultural Values and Citizenship Education: A Call for Methodological Re-Consideration in Zimbabwe’s Religious Education Curriculum

G. Museka

Abstract


Because  of  her  history,  post  colonial  Zimbabwe  is  characterised  by  diverse  and    heterogeneous  religious  and   cultural  beliefs  and  practices.  Some  of  these  beliefs  and  practices,  as  well   as  norms  and   customs,  are  inextricably  bound  to  particular  religious  traditions  and  philosophies  such  as  African  Traditional  Religion,  Christianity,  Islam,  Hinduism,  Buddhism,  Bahai  Faith,  Taoism  and  Confucianism.  Despite  the  multiplicity  of   this  country’s  religious  contours,  the  religious  education  curriculum  has  sadly  remained  neo-confessional  to  a  large  extent.   In  this  pluralistic  environment,  the  inhabitants  have  to  grapple  with  issues  of  moral  decadence,    individualism,  identity  crises,  intolerance,   cultural  concubinage, among others, yet  the  Zimbabwe’s  religious  education  curriculum  cosmetically  rather  than   radically  addresses  these  vices.   The  curriculum  is  not  consistent  with  the  cultural  diversity  of  this  society.   It  is  against  this  backdrop  that  this  study  assumes  that a paradigm shift in terms of methodology in the  teaching  and  learning  of  religious  education  can  promote  intercultural,  values  and  citizenship  issues  with  the  view  of  counteracting  the  aforementioned  anomalies  and  disorientations.  Informed  by  ‘modern’  approaches  in  the  teaching  and  learning  of  religious  education,  such  as  phenomenology,  dialogue,  multi-faith,  interpretive   and  religious  literacy,  this  paper  explores  the  religious  dimension  to  intercultural,  values  and  citizenship  education.  Although  these  concepts  are  related  to several  other  disciplines  such  as  philosophy,  linguistics,  anthropology  and  history,  this  study  is  solely  interested  in  their  relationship  to  religious  education.



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