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February 27 , 2009

The American University in a Postsecular Age


For much of the twentieth century, it was assumed that higher education was and ought to be a secular enterprise, but that approach no longer suffices. The culture has shifted, and contemporary college and university students are increasingly bringing religious and spiritual questions to campus. In response, college and university leaders are exploring anew the relationship between religion and higher education. The American University in a Postsecular Age grapples with key questions: – How religious or irreligious are faculty and students today? What level of religious literacy should be expected from students? – Can religion be allowed into the classroom without being disruptive? – Should colleges and universities help students reflect on their own faith? – Is religion antithetical to critical inquiry? – Can religion have a positive role to play in higher education? This is a state-of-the-art introduction to the national discussion about religion and higher education. Leading scholars and top educators express a wide spectrum of opinions that reflect the best current thinking. Introductory and concluding essays by the editors describe the postsecular character of our age and propose a comprehensive framework intended to facilitate ongoing conversation.
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