Search results for: Gubkin Liora
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A commitment to empathetic understanding shaped the field of religious studies; although subject to critique, it remains an important teaching practice where students are charged with the task of recognizing, and perhaps even appreciating, a worldview that appears significantly different from their own. However, when the focus of the course is historical trauma there are significant epistemological and ethical reasons empathetic understanding may not be our best pedagogical strategy. Drawing primarily on my experience teaching a general education class “The Holocaust and Its Impact” at California State University, Bakersfield, I advocate replacing empathetic understanding with engaged witnessing as a pedagogical framework and strategy for teaching traumatic knowledge. To make this case, I delineate four qualities of engaged witnessing and demonstrate their use in teaching about the Holocaust.
Updated: Jun. 17, 2015