Decolonizing Discipline: Children, Corporal Punishment, Christian Theologies, and Reconciliation

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    Valerie E. Michaelson, Joan E. Durrant (eds.)

    Publisher: University of Manitoba Press

    Year: 2020

    Format: Paperback

    Size: 240 pages

    ISBN: 9780887558658

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In June 2015, Canada's Truth and Reconciliation Commission released 94 Calls to Action that urged reform of policies and programs to repair the harms caused by the Indian Residential Schools. "Decolonizing Discipline" is a response to Call to Action 6—the call to repeal Section 43 of Canada's Criminal Code, which justifies the corporal punishment of children. Editors Valerie Michaelson and Joan Durrant have brought together diverse voices to respond to this call and to consider the ways that colonial Western interpretations of Christian theologies have been used over centuries to normalize violence and rationalize the physical discipline of children. Theologians, clergy, social scientists, and First Nations, Inuit, and Métis leaders and community members explore the risks that corporal punishment poses to children and examine practical, non-violent approaches to discipline. The authors invite readers to participate in shaping this country into one that does not sanction violence against children. The result is a multifaceted exploration of theological debates, scientific evidence, and personal journeys of the violence that permeated Canada's Residential Schools and continues in Canadian homes today. Together, they compel us to decolonize discipline in Canada.

About the Editors

Valerie Michaelson is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Health Sciences at Brock University. Her current projects focus on violence, spirituality, mental health, and decolonization and reconciliation.

Joan Durrant is a Professor in the Department of Community Health Sciences at the University of Manitoba. For three decades, she has studied the psychological, cultural and legal dimensions of corporal punishment of children, and the global movement to abolish it.

Table of Contents

Part I. Setting the Stage: Indian Residential Schools, Canadian Churches, and Corporal Punishment

Chapter 1. A Prophetic Call to Churches in Canada
Chapter 2. ‘I was Spanked and I’m OK’: Examining Thirty Years of Research Evidence on Corporal Punishment
Chapter 3. Corporal Punishment: The Child’s Experience
Chapter 4. Lies that have Shaped Us: Racism, Violence and Ageism in Canadian Churches

Part II. Examining Sacred Texts: Christian Theological Reflections on Corporal Punishment

Chapter 5. Acculturation, Enculturation and Social Imaginaries: The Complex Relationship between the Gospel and Culture
Chapter 6. Reading the Bible Redemptively
Chapter 7. What do we do with Proverbs?
Chapter 8. The Significance of Robust Theologies of Childhood for Honouring Children’s Full Humanity and Rejecting Corporal Punishment

Part III. Seeking Further Wisdom: Indigenous Parenting, Positive Approaches to Discipline and Spiritual Practices

Chapter 9. The Circle of Courage: Raising Respectful, Responsible Children through Indigenous Child Rearing Practices
Chapter 10. “Inunnguiniq” (The Making of a Human Being): Inuit Traditional Values and Child Rearing Practices
Chapter 11. Rethinking Christian Theologies of Discipline and Discipleship
Chapter 12. Walking the Path Toward Reconciliation: One Mother’s Transformative Journey from Parenting with Punishment to Parenting with Positive Discipline
Chapter 13. Whole Person Discipline: The Spiritual Nurture of Children

Part IV. Moving Toward Reconciliation: Reflections on the Theological Statement and (re)Imagining our Shared Future Chapter

14. Developing a Theological Position Statement on Corporal Punishment: The Process Chapter
15. An International Perspective on the Canadian Theological Statement: Context, Tools and Encouragement Chapter
16. “On Sparing the Rod and Spoiling the Child:” Preaching on Call to Action Number 6, and the Repeal of Section 43 of the Criminal Code of Canada Chapter
17. An Opportune Time: Corrupt Imagination and Distorted Lives Chapter
18. Hiding, Finding and Breaking: One Man’s Journey to Breaking the Intergenerational Cycle of Violence
Chapter 19. Let these be Hands that Bless

What People Are Saying

"Decolonizing Discipline transcends disciplinary boundaries and advocates for all Canadians — academics, theologians, and readers alike — to push toward improved standards of compassion and care for our children. " Alex Gagne, BC Studies

Tags: (anti-)psych ....... canada ....... children and youth ....... indigenous ....... Joan E. Durrant ....... racism ....... religion ....... settler colonialism ....... University of Manitoba Press ....... Valerie E. Michaelson .......