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date: 13 December 2019

Abstract and Keywords

The United States is among the most religiously diverse countries in the world. Although such diversity is not a new phenomenon, its degree and visibility have increased dramatically in the past fifty years, reigniting the debate over a fundamental civic question: What is the common identity that binds us together? How we respond to religious diversity in the context of education has enormous implications for our democratic society. To the extent that previous frameworks such as exclusion or assimilation ever were desirable or effective, they no longer are. Increased religious diversity is an established fact and growing trend. The United States needs a more inclusive and robust civic framework for religious diversity in the twenty-first century—pluralism—and this framework should be an essential component of civic education.

Keywords: religious diversity, democratic society, pluralism, exclusion, assimilation, civic education

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