Show Summary Details

Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD HANDBOOKS ONLINE (www.oxfordhandbooks.com). © Oxford University Press, 2018. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a title in Oxford Handbooks Online for personal use (for details see Privacy Policy and Legal Notice).

date: 16 October 2019

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter charts the historical development of Bible reading and Bible courses in American public schools from the early 1800s to the early 2000s, discussing key events such as nineteenth-century Bible wars, the creation of distinct Bible courses in conjunction with Sunday Schools and Weekday Religious Education, Supreme Court cases like Abington Township School District v. Schempp, and post-Schempp efforts to promote Bible classes. It pays particular attention to the ways Bible reading and Bible courses have often favored some religious perspectives over others and to the efforts of courts, educators, and special interest groups to identify constitutional ways to teach about the Bible. Hitting the legal benchmark of nonsectarianism has proved to be challenging, despite broad support in many quarters for the general project of religious literacy. Putting contemporary practice into historical perspective reveals similarities between ongoing debates about the Bible and public education and past controversies.

Keywords: Abington Township School District v. Schempp, Bible and public education, Bible courses, Bible Literacy Project, Bible reading, National Council on Bible Curriculum in Public Schools, teaching about the Bible, Weekday Religious Education

Access to the complete content on Oxford Handbooks Online requires a subscription or purchase. Public users are able to search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter without a subscription.

Please subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you have purchased a print title that contains an access token, please see the token for information about how to register your code.

For questions on access or troubleshooting, please check our FAQs, and if you can''t find the answer there, please contact us.