Anita Houck




More than six decades after its publication, Horace Miner’s 1956 article “Body Ritual among the Nacirema” remains a reliable pedagogical tool, remarkably successful in helping students see their own ethnocentric biases. Catholics & Cultures has potential to do similar work. The site lacks some of what makes Miner’s text so effective, in particular its capacity to bring about a sudden shift in perception. The site also shares some of the article’s limitations, particularly in focusing on ritual to the relative exclusion of other aspects of religion. That said, the site can help students gain the religious literacy and develop the dispositions needed for interfaith engagement. In addition, especially in the context of Catholic education, the site addresses a theological need in the Church by fostering what Stan Chu Ilo has called “a hermeneutics of multiplicity and inclusion."



To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.