In August, Palgrave Macmillan will publish Religious Education in a Multicultural Europe: Children, Parents and Schools, edited by Emer Smyth (ESRI), Maureen Lyons (U. College Dublin), and Merike Darmody (ESRI). The publisher’s description follows.
Religion and schooling has become a controversial issue across Europe. But we know little about how these tensions are experienced by children and their families. This groundbreaking book draws on an innovative, comparative study to examine how religious and/or secular beliefs are formed at school and in the family in five countries with very different educational systems (Belgium, Germany, Ireland, Malta, and Scotland). New information on how schools and families influence the development of children’s religious identities is presented by placing the experiences of primary school children at the centre of the research, yielding fresh insights into their perspectives on religion and schooling. The book adopts a multidisciplinary perspective, thus providing a more holistic perspective on the processes at play. Importantly, it offers insights into key policy issues concerning the place of religion in the school system, illuminating current debates around religion and multiculturalism across Europe.