In Daniel Boscaljon & Jeff Keuss (eds.), Paul Ricoeur and the Hope of Higher Education: The Just University. Rowman & Littlefield. pp. Chapter 10 (2020)

Nathan Eric Dickman
University of The Ozarks
How can religiously affiliated institutions that promote liberal arts maintain commitment both to their affiliation and to the ideal of religious inclusivity? What principles of accreditation should be used by agencies—such as the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges—in assessing religiously affiliated yet inclusive institutions? Many religiously affiliated institutions claim to value liberal arts learning and critical inquiry, to prepare students for a diverse world. Yet affiliation often brings with it pervasive structures of religious privilege that inhibit questioning and critical thinking, especially with regard to religions. I bring Ricoeur’s philosophical hermeneutics and his approach to religious inclusivity developed in his essay “Religious Belief” (2010) to bear on these issues. Ricoeur uses the models of translation and multilingualism to promote what he calls religious “hospitality.” Through this Ricoeurian approach, I develop principles of inclusivity for use in accrediting religiously affiliated colleges.
Keywords Ricoeur  Accreditation  Religious Pluralism
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