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IACM 2023

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Creatively Engaging Religious and Other Worldview Differences

This session builds on new scholarly work on engaging worldview differences, especially those involving religion. Combining results of a doctoral dissertation on religious hatred with an international project investigating creative approaches to worldview conflicts, and referring to diverse case studies including from Kosovo, Eastern and Western Europe, Russia, and US/Canada, we will

- offer a research-informed working definition of worldview conflict, examining why those with religious dimensions can be particularly charged - share research on the roots and dynamics of religious hatred as a potent aspect of worldview conflict that can manifest in rapid escalation - examine why religiously-involved conflicts such as abortion are so “charged” and potentially escalate quickly into violence - compare different intensities and political dynamics of conflict over abortion and other worldview issues in the US/Canada and Europe to identify factors contributing to worldview conflict escalation - examine theoretical foundations for formulating and applying creative approaches to engagement - summarize a range of creative approaches to worldview conflict engagement in specific conflicts in these regions - engage attendees in experiential work related to our presentation using creative activities - reflect together on unanswered questions, trajectories for future work and the unknown terrain before us.

This session is novel in synthesizing recent research on the roots and dynamics of religious hatred with research into worldview conflicts with religious dimensions. Conventional conflict management approaches are often insufficient in worldview conflicts; we therefore centre our inquiry on creative ways of engaging, inviting attendees to experience examples in the session.

Michelle LeBaron
The University of British Columbia

Andrew Acland
United Kingdom


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