Aniconism and Images in Norwegian RE-textbooks: Representations and Historical Change
Sissel Undheim [+]
University of Bergen
In this chapter, I look at how authors and publishers have handled the challenge of a potential conflict between the curriculum’s demand for “equal pedagogical principles” and the ideal that “all religions and views of life are to be treated in a professional and impartial way based on their distinctive features and variety” (Kunnskapsdepartementet, Læreplan for RLE). By studying changes in visual representation of Islam and Judaism in two “generations” of textbooks, namely those from the two curriculum revisions of 1997 and 2008, the article discusses the different interpretations of Islamic aniconism expressed in textbooks from four different publishers. The impact of the cartoon controversy of 2005 is one of several potential factors that will be explored in order to explain the palpable changes in the material that is analyzed.