Catholic religion teachers in Chile: an approach to identity building with regard to existing mission-profession tension

FRANCISCO JAVIER VARGAS HERRERA, Loreto Moya-Marchant

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations

Abstract

Religion classes are found throughout the entire school system in Chile. These are mostly conducted by Catholic teachers who form their own professional identity from internal demands (imposed by the Catholic Church) and external demands (imposed by the school culture, social media, students and their families). This paper presents a reference framework for the professional teacher identity and analyses the linguistic structures and persuasion strategies present in three documents that directly question this group of teachers, building an identity profile of them. Discursive mechanisms are identified which legitimise identity traits. The way in which said productions influence the thoughts and actions of their readership is also analysed. A documentary study design is used based on critical documentary analysis. The investigation shows breaks in the discourse and an existing tension between the mission and the profession, underlining that the Catholic religion teacher is first and foremost an evangeliser. The performance capacity of this discourse on the listeners is discussed along with the effect of the almost complete absence of references to teaching professionalism and the possible influence on the development and results of the subject.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)207-217
Number of pages11
JournalBritish Journal of Religious Education
Volume40
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - 4 May 2018

Keywords

  • Catholic religion teachers in Chile
  • critical documentary analysis
  • professional teacher identity
  • religious education in schools

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