I. Religion & Virtue Theory > Bevan on "The Question of Conscientiousness and Religious Engagement in Public Schools"

Ryan Bevan has several papers in print on liberal education and character virtues. This one is Studies in Philosophy and Education, Volume 30, Number 3, pp. 257-269(13).

Abstract. In this paper, I examine the question of how to nurture and develop conscientiousness thinkers and future citizens of diverse liberal-democratic societies from the perspective of virtue epistemology (VE). More specifically, I examine this question in terms of how public schools might frame engagement with religious perspectives in the classroom. I begin by distinguishing between good and bad conscientiousness through an exploration of current work in the field of virtue epistemology. I then follow Kenneth Strike in his defense of the need for a more robust engagement with religious perspectives as a liberal educational imperative. I argue that basing a framework for engagement on VE, particularly the notion of subjective justification, has significant benefits. My main interest in developing a framework for what I deem to be a necessary supplemental dimension of citizenship education focused on religious engagement is in underlining the responsibility that liberal educators have in regulating what is often a highly contentious and unfortunately caddish debate surrounding religion and the religious. I conclude that by eschewing this responsibility educators are potentially missing out on significant resources for supporting the liberal-democratic educational agenda.

Keywords: Liberal education; Conscientiousness; Virtue epistemology; Engagement; Religious diversity

May 2011 DOI:
January 3, 2013 | Registered CommenterGuy Axtell