Equality, Freedom, and Religion

Paperback | February 28, 2013

byRoger Trigg

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Is religious freedom being curtailed in pursuit of equality, and the outlawing of discrimination? Is enough effort made to accommodate those motivated by a religious conscience? All rights matter but at times the right to put religious beliefs into practice increasingly takes second place inthe law of different countries to the pursuit of other social priorities. The right to freedom of belief and to manifest belief is written into all human rights charters. In the United States religious freedom is sometimes seen as 'the first freedom'. Yet increasingly in many jurisdictions in Europeand North America, religious freedom can all too easily be 'trumped' by other rights. Roger Trigg looks at the assumptions that lie behind the subordination of religious liberty to other social concerns, especially the pursuit of equality. He gives examples from different Western countries of a steady erosion of freedom of religion. The protection of freedom of worship is often seenas sufficient, and religious practices are separated from the beliefs which inspire them. So far from religion in general, and Christianity in particular, providing a foundation for our beliefs in human dignity and human rights, religion is all too often seen as threat and a source of conflict, tobe controlled at all costs. The challenge is whether any freedom can preserved for long, if the basic human right to freedom of religious belief and practice is dismissed as of little account, with no attempt to provide any reasonable accommodation. Given the central role of religion in human life, unnecessary limitations onits expression are attacks on human freedom itself.

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Is religious freedom being curtailed in pursuit of equality, and the outlawing of discrimination? Is enough effort made to accommodate those motivated by a religious conscience? All rights matter but at times the right to put religious beliefs into practice increasingly takes second place inthe law of different countries to the pursuit...

Roger Trigg is Emeritus Professor of Philosophy at the University of Warwick, and Academic Director of the Centre for the Study of Religion in Public Life at Kellogg College, Oxford.

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:208 pagesPublished:February 28, 2013Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:019967129X

ISBN - 13:9780199671298

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Table of Contents

Introduction1. Does Religious Freedom Matter?2. Does Equality Trump Freedom?3. Religious Beliefs and Institutions.4. Equal Beliefs?5. Is Religious Toleration Enough?6. Freedom from the Law?7. Belief and Practice8. Necessary Limits to Religious Freedom9. The Challenge of Equality10. The Foundations of Equality and FreedomConclusion

Editorial Reviews

"a well-written and approachable discussion of some very difficult questions about freedom of religion and equality before the law ... The author analyses with exemplary clarity the implications of numerous awkward cases and judicial opinions from many quarters." --Brian Wicker, The Tablet 21/01/2012