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This book aims to examine and critically analyse the role that religion has and should have in the public and legal sphere. The main purpose of the book is to explain why religion, on the whole, should not be tolerated in a tolerant-liberal democracy and to describe exactly how it should not be tolerated – mainly by addressing legal issues. The main arguments of the book are, first, that as a general rule illiberal intolerance should not be tolerated; secondly, that there are meaningful, unique links between religion and intolerance, and between holding religious beliefs and holding intolerant views (and ultimately acting upon these views); and thirdly, that the religiosity of a legal claim is normally a reason, although not necessarily a prevailing one, not to accept that claim.
Challenging a widespread belief that religious people are politically intolerant, Marie Ann Eisenstein offers compelling evidence to the contrary. In this surprising and significant book, she thoroughly re-examines previous studies and presents new research to support her argument that there is, in fact, a positive correlation between religious belief and practice and political tolerance in the United States. Eisenstein utilises sophisticated new analytical tools to re-evaluate earlier data and offers persuasive new statistical evidence to support her claim that religiousness and political tolerance do, indeed, mix -- and that religiosity is not the threat to liberal democracy that it is often made out to be.
Main description: What impulse prompted some newspapers to attribute the murder of 77 Norwegians to Islamic extremists, until it became evident that a right-wing Norwegian terrorist was the perpetrator? Why did Switzerland, a country of four minarets, vote to ban those structures? How did a proposed Muslim cultural center in lower Manhattan ignite a fevered political debate across the United States? In The New Religious Intolerance, Martha C. Nussbaum surveys such developments and identifies the fear behind these reactions. Drawing inspiration from philosophy, history, and literature, she suggests a route past this limiting response and toward a more equitable, imaginative, and free society.Fear, Nussbaum writes, is 0more narcissistic than other emotions.0 Legitimate anxieties become distorted and displaced, driving laws and policies biased against those different from us. Overcoming intolerance requires consistent application of universal principles of respect for conscience. Just as important, it requires greater understanding. Nussbaum challenges us to embrace freedom of religious observance for all, extending to others what we demand for ourselves. She encourages us to expand our capacity for empathetic imagination by cultivating our curiosity, seeking friendship across religious lines, and establishing a consistent ethic of decency and civility. With this greater understanding and respect, Nussbaum argues, we can rise above the politics of fear and toward a more open and inclusive future.
No account of contemporary politics can ignore religion. The liberal democratic tradition in political thought has long treated religion with some suspicion, regarding it as a source of division and instability. Faith in Politics shows how such arguments are unpersuasive and dependent on questionable empirical claims: rather than being a serious threat to democracies' legitimacy, stability and freedom, religion can be democratically constructive. Using historical cases of important religious political movements to add empirical weight, Bryan McGraw suggests that religion will remain a significant political force for the foreseeable future and that pluralist democracies would do well to welcome rather than marginalize it.
The creation of a secular education system was one of the great social experiments designed to break down religious intolerance within society. One element of this design was administrative, involving the creation of non-denominational schools, and another element involved a centralised curriculum. In this collection of essays, political philosophers, lawyers, sociologists, theologians and educators explore the role of state schools in promoting tolerance within 21st century multicultural, religiously pluralistic societies. How may different models of liberalism in the secular state have different outcomes in relation to religious tolerance in the education system? Does a state education system have a role in teaching values such as tolerance, and if so, how is this best achieved? How are epistemology and truth connected with tolerance? How does the ideal of a ‘value free’ secular education mask the values that the secular state teaches? The essays are written from both theoretical and practical perspectives and engage with each other directly to address one of the significant issues of our day. This is the fourth volume arising from a series of conferences on the theme of ‘Negotiating the Sacred’. Previous volumes have included /Blasphemy and Sacrilege in a Multicultural Society; Blasphemy and Sacrilege in the Arts; and Medicine, Religion and the Body.
This study focuses primarily on the nature of "direct action" in relation to contemporary movements, and considers the role of direct action methods in past campaigns for constitutional and social rights. Boycotts, sit-ins, obstructions, civil disobedience and other unconstitutional forms of protest are examined to see whether they necessarily lead to violence. The political conditions which encourage violence and the effects of various type of violent action are also discussed. The theoretical issues raised by direct action in a parliamentary system are also discussed.
Across European societies, pluralism is experienced in new and challenging ways. Our understanding of what it means for societies to be accepting of diversity has to therefore be revisited. This volume seeks to meet this challenge with perspectives that consider new dynamics towards tolerance, intolerance and respect.

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