Religion and religious diversity now occupy a central place in several prominent debates in contemporary political theory, such as those concerning the meaning(s) and relevance of secularism, the place of religious reasons in political deliberation, and whether religious beliefs and practices deserve special treatment by laws and public institutions. That religion has once again become a divisive topic amongst political theorists is perhaps surprising, given the widespread consensus about such staples of liberal political morality as the separation of church and state and the principle of religious freedom.
Featuring the work of both established and up-and-coming scholars, this collection will take stock of the recent turn towards religion in political theory, identify some of the major unresolved challenges and issues, and suggest new avenues for theoretical inquiry. Taken as a whole, the collection showcases some cutting-edge work by leading scholars of religion and political theory and demonstrates the vitality of religion and political theory as a research agenda.
Chapter 1: Introduction
Jonathan Seglow and Andrew Shorten
Part 1: Secularism and Liberalism
Chapter 2: Inclusion or Exclusion of Religion: What Does Secularism Require?
Chapter 3: The Paradox of Political Secularism
Chapter 4: Shaping Religion: The Limits of Transformative Liberalism
Part 2: Religious Accommodation
Chapter 5: Religion and the Claims of Citizenship: The Dangers of Institutional Accommodation
Chapter 6: Exemption Proliferation
Chapter 7: (Not) Shaking Hands with People of the Opposite Sex: Civility, National Identity, and Accommodation
Part 3: The New Challenges of Religious Diversity
Chapter 8: Religious Duties and Equal Opportunities in Public Spaces
Chapter 9: What is wrong with the Swiss Minaret Ban? A Comprehensive Response on Belonging in Post-migration Societies
Esma Baycan and Matteo Gianni
Chapter 10: Compromise and Religious Diversity
Jonathan Seglow is Reader in Political Theory, in the Department of Politics and International Relations at Royal Holloway, University of London.
Andrew Shorten is Senior Lecturer in Politics at the University of Limerick.
In a series of fascinating studies, this volume examines how secular liberal societies should provide for the diverse religious commitments of their populations. Writing lucidly and accessibly, the contributors combine analytic precision with theoretical insight and proposals for public policy. This is a ‘must-read’ volume for anyone interested in the political and legal issues facing contemporary multi-faith societies.
A superb collection that illuminates the theoretical stakes of recent controversies over religious diversity. It is exciting to see a new generation of scholars working at the cutting edge of debates about secularism and accommodation. This volume, carefully curated by Seglow and Shorten, provides a distinctively European perspective – a welcome addition to the US-dominated literature on religious freedom.