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  • Writer's pictureWEDossett

The RE Podcast: Decolonising the teaching of Buddhism

Louisa-Jane Smith and I discuss the role of the colonial encounter in the way our knowledge about Buddhism is structured. We discuss why school curriula centre the so-called 'Historical Buddha'. We explore why it is that Buddhism is presented as 'rational' and 'peaceful' not only in schools but also in the popular Western imagination. We talk about what is missed when these elements are foregrounded. We consider the challenges face by RE teachers who find themselves having to 'sell' the study of religion to a consitutency that questions its relevance, and we explore some of the potential distortions that arise when Buddhism is (understandably) pressed into that agenda.


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