Philosophy for/with Children, Religious Education and Education for Spirituality. Steps Toward a Review of the Literature

In Ellen Duthie, Félix García Moriyón & Rafael Robles Loro (eds.), Parecidos de familia. Propuestas actuales en Filosofía para Niños / Family resemblances. Current proposals in Philosophy for Children. Madrid, Spain: Anaya. pp. 279-296 (2018)
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The authors describe the organization of a review of research literature on the relationship between Philosophy for/with Children (P4/wC) and religious education/education for spirituality (RE-EfS). They summarize a debate about whether the two are mutually enhancing or incompatible. They explain delimiting the scope of the project and present a grid of research questions used to analyze the literature. They summarize findings on how P4/wC is relevant to five categories of aims of RE-EfS: hermeneutical, cultural, socio-political, moral/spiritual, and epistemological. Many papers in the latter category promote P4/wC as a method for children’s epistemic agency in constructing their religious beliefs. Some respond to objections that children may reject traditional beliefs. Few address potential confusion and angst of children asked to question and defend their religious views. The authors conclude that the pragmatic thrust of P4/wC in resisting a dichotomy between religious and scientific thinking is a value to post-secular society.

Author Profiles

Maughn Rollins Gregory
Montclair State University
Stefano Oliverio
University of Naples Federico II


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