Those of us who teach are aware (or should be aware!) of the relevance of prior knowledge to education. One of the things I wrestle with most is the fact that, in the same class, I may have students who have never read the Bible before ever, and some who read it regularly for devotional purposes. It is a challenge to make the class intelligible and interesting to both sorts of students and the range of others who find them in the class.
I thus found extremely useful the video Hemant Mehta shared recently, featuring one Jewish atheist’s account of the story of Jesus as she has been able to piece it together from “holiday specials and the trailer to The Passion of the Christ.”
Thank you, Jamie Bernstein, for sharing this! I hope that others who teach classes like the one I teach on the historical figure of Jesus at Butler University will find this useful as they reflect on matters of prior knowledge and general cultural familiarity.