About This Issue
By Kathryn Peltier Campbell, Editor
Even in a country founded on the principles of religious
freedom, open dialogue about religious differences is
the source of deep-seated anxiety in college and university
classrooms. As faculty, staff, and administrators prepare
students to live in a world where religious beliefs
profoundly influence global relations, they must enter
the deep and uncertain waters of spirituality and religious
inquiry. College students need—and often request—guidance
about these topics that are inextricable from their
personal identity explorations and their preparation
for public roles.
This issue of Diversity & Democracy begins
to examine the place of religion and spirituality in
the American classroom. Our contributors embrace the
difficult questions, asking not only whether spirituality
belongs in the academic setting, but also how to best
educate students for conversation across religious divides.
Knowing that belief affects learning across disciplines,
from physics to history to political science, our authors
provide practical advice to educators wishing to understand
this aspect of American diversity and prepare students
for citizenship in a religiously pluralistic world.