Religious Studies Students Explore the Women of the Bible

Having the opportunity to participate in a bespoke Religious Studies Club, A-level Religion, Ethics and Philosophy students celebrated International Women’s Day by conducting research and delivering presentations on biblical female figures. Students engaged in a View@B6 podcast episode discussing Lilith and challenging Eve’s role, examining courageous leaders such as Esther and Deborah and explored Martha and Mary Magdalene, assessing the feminism, role, and impact of the stories of biblical women on the human story of the bible. You can listen for free here 

Religious Studies teacher, Lee Dickson commented:

“it’s marvellous that our students have the opportunities such as podcast making to develop their collaboration, confidence and communication skills that makes them world ready. I’m impressed with the level of professionalism and creativity of all those involved.”

This year’s project builds on last year when students engaged in a podcast discussing Hypatia of Alexandria, Diotima of Mantinea and Hipparchia of Maroneia, exploring the impact that ancient female philosophers had on the growth of mathematics, science and ideas of beauty, love, virtue and harmony with the environment; and how their intellects supported the learning and education of others. You can catch-up with this episode here.

Students were shown how to use the Anchor app for producing a podcast, being shown how to use certain features for editing and integrating music and sounds for different segments.

Other learners took the opportunity to give presentations to the class, providing forensic analysis of strong female characterisation in the fictional show, ‘The Good Place’, which embeds explorations of a range of philosophical and ethical themes. The examination highlighted how the writers not only casted female leads, but also the extent to which their character developments in a fictional afterlife reveal differing personal philosophies and personal redemptions. A student argued certain characters, their strengths, their flaws and inter-dynamics with the male characters and each other enable them to explore principles such as morality, detailing issues connected to the A-level course such as Kantian ethics, moral relativism, agape and situation ethics and issues of salvation, existentialism and the nature of life after death; in addition to the existence of God and problems with a flawed universe, in which they made useful connections to platonic ideas.

Former Elton High School student, Grace Waterson, offered an interactive presentation on the works of a modern feminist thinker and showed how other societies within the world explore their spirituality using natural resources of their environments; critically discussing with the class how shamans and specialists in different cultures use sacred plants and herbs and natural surroundings to explore the Self and understand the universe; drawing upon research of psychologists who conducted university experiments in this field.

Find out more about A Level Religion, Ethics & Philosophy here.

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