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Posted by wmmbb in Australian Politics, European Politics, Multiculturalism.

The school curricula has always in my experience been part of the the cultural battlefield that politicians, wisely or otherwise, have entered. Sometimes we did learn things that would be relevant to our world, and sometimes the clock was turned back. I do not blame my schooling, but I am aware I never learned about the costs of the British Empire, even when they shaped the experience of my own forebears. So it is useful that politicians have cultural agendas, social programs, often not designed for enlightenment but for its opposite. Such cultural agendas should be part of the political discourse.

As in other European countries, Islam is a growing religion in Germany with the adherents to it various forms approaching three million people and with 700,000 students in German school. Deutsche Wella reports that State Governments are introducing courses in Islam in German schools, both primary and secondary with the flow on effect on the universities to provide teachers. Islam is not monolithic and there are more divisions than the Sunni/Shiite divide. Instruction cannot be sourced from the local mosque and must be standardized to cover different beliefs.

Still German governments are dealing with demographic trends, and in the process advancing the proposition that multiculturalism promotes integration, an anathema to the Howard Government. Sometimes it seems to me that social issues might be dealt with more successfully with creative approaches rather than an over reliance on the arid doctrine of market fundamentalism.

[The last link via Kevin Drum at  Political Animal(Washington Monthly)]



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