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Justice, Spirituality & Education Journal

Abstract

A review of current philosophy, research, and practice regarding the teaching of social justice reveals an unsettling paradox: While there has been a significant movement among educators to infuse and promote ideals of social justice within their curricula, this movement has been largely operating within a postmodern framework which, at its foundation, cannot sustain a unified theory of justice. Within such a postmodern framework, social justice pedagogy may be, at best, a well-intentioned but terribly fragmented social experiment, and at its worst, an unsettling prosecution of political hegemony. This paper will investigate the philosophical roots of this disconnect between theory and practice and the problems that it poses to public and higher education. As a corrective, we must explore the critical relationship between concepts of justice and concepts of truth, realizing that without a proper conception of truth, one cannot pursue (and therefore, presumably, teach) a proper view of justice. An outline of the biblical conception of truth and justice will be presented for the Christian educator who would take seriously—in theory and in practice—the call to promote justice within his/her sphere of influence as an integral part of Christian discipleship.

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