(Reposted from: JCIE. May 24, 2021)
By Raj Kumar Dhungana
Dhungana, R. K. (2021). Peace education initiative in Nepal: Redressing the value of ‘celebrating diversity’. Journal of Contemporary Issues in Education, 2021, 16(1), pp.3-22. DOI: https://doi.org/10.20355/jcie29434
In a multicultural society, education can both foster the value of ‘celebrating diversity’ and thereby the social harmony but it can also foster social tensions and fuel conflicts by promoting cultural homogenization. Using content analysis of education policies, curriculum and textbooks this study examined the way Nepal’s historical education system shifted from monocultural education towards a multicultural peace education approach. This study revealed that, by including the contents that promote multicultural values, the critical peace education initiative contributes to redressing the socio-political tensions that the monocultural education system fuelled historically. However, the local ownership, longer-term commitment of the stakeholders, and regular consultations with the representatives of different cultural groups in curricular reform are essential for a successful peace education initiative.