Confident Pluralism: Surviving And Thriving Through Deep Difference

Hardcover | May 12, 2016

byJohn D. Inazu

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In recent years, the United States has become increasingly polarized and divided. This fissure is evident across the nation in conflict over LGBTQ rights; in challenges to religious liberty; in clashes over abortion; in tensions between law enforcement and minority communities. With all of this physical and emotional violence enacted by our legal system and such seemingly irresolvable differences in beliefs, values, and identities across the country, we are forced to ask—how can the people of this nation ever live in peace together?

In Confident Pluralism, John D. Inazu analyzes the current state of the country, orients the contemporary United States within its broader history, and explores the ways that Americans can—and must—live together peaceably despite these deeply engrained differences. Pluralism is one of the founding creeds of the United States—yet America’s society and legal system continues to face deep, unsolved structural problems in dealing with differing cultural anxieties, and minority viewpoints. Inazu not only argues that it is possible to cohabitate peacefully in this country, but also lays out realistic guidelines for our society and legal system to achieve the new American dream through civic practices that value toleration over protest, humility over defensiveness, and persuasion over coercion.

An essential clarion call during one of the most troubled times in US history, Confident Pluralism offers a refreshing argument for how the legal system can protect peoples’ personal beliefs and differences and shows how we can build toward a healthier future of tolerance, patience, and empathy.

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In recent years, the United States has become increasingly polarized and divided. This fissure is evident across the nation in conflict over LGBTQ rights; in challenges to religious liberty; in clashes over abortion; in tensions between law enforcement and minority communities. With all of this physical and emotional violence enacted b...

John D. Inazu is the Sally D. Danforth Distinguished Professor of Law and Religion at Washington University in St. Louis.

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Format:HardcoverDimensions:176 pages, 9 × 6 × 1 inPublished:May 12, 2016Publisher:University Of Chicago PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:022636545X

ISBN - 13:9780226365459

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Extra Content

Table of Contents

Introduction
Part I    Constitutional Commitments
Chapter 1          Our Modest Unity: Rights, Inclusion, and Dissent
Chapter 2          The Voluntary Groups Requirement: Rehabilitating the Right of Association
Chapter 3          The Public Forum Requirement: Public Spaces, Private Forums, and Parks & Recreation
Chapter 4          The Public Funding Requirement: Tax Exemptions, Student Forums, and Government Orthodoxies
Part II   Civic Practices
Chapter 5          Civic Aspirations: Tolerance, Humility, and Patience
Chapter 6          Living Speech: Rising above Insults and Bullying
Chapter 7          Collective Action: Protests, Boycotts, and Strikes
Chapter 8          Common Ground: Relationships across Difference
Conclusion
Acknowledgments
Notes
Index

Editorial Reviews

Confident Pluralism names the challenge we face as a society that is made stronger by being more diverse and more dynamic, and weaker by being more divided and fragmented at the same time. The answer to that challenge, as Inazu suggests, lies in taking pluralism seriously and framing a political conversation that focuses on our successes rather than dwelling on our failures."