The Material Logics of Confirmation

The Material Logics of Confirmation

Morten Holmqvist (Department of Religious Education, MF Norwegian School of Theology, Oslo, Norway)
DOI: 10.4018/ijantti.2014100103
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Abstract

The paper explores the material spaces and logics of religious learning processes. A discrepancy between religious educators and the 14-year-old confirmands was evident during a 1 year of ethnographic fieldwork. A material semiotic approach provides important perspectives on the dynamics between material and human actors in religious learning context. The findings suggest that different notions of space with different logics of religious learning were established during the confirmation program. The spaces and logics were constituted by the interplay with material objects, pastors, catechists and confirmands. The paper points to how materiality is part of religious learning and how materiality can open up for different ways of practicing and conceptualize religion.
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2. Studies On Confirmation And Religious Learning

Studies on religious learning often focus on a formal school setting (Haakedal, 2012; Valk, 2009; Van der Zee, Hermans, & Aarnoutse, 2006; Vermeer, 2012). In confirmation, religious learning takes place outside of school and is part of local congregations' religious learning activities. A significant contribution to the inquiry of this type of religious activity was the comparative study on confirmation work (Schweitzer et al., 2010). This extensive quantitative project provided a valuable map of confirmation work in Europe. Still there is need for further research on how learning and didactics are developed in confirmation (Schweitzer et al., 2010, p. 291).

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