Panel Chair and Presenter, First Annual Conference, European Academy of Religion, Bologna, 5-8 March, 2018

‘The European Academy of Religion (EuARe) is a research initiative launched under the high patronage of the European Parliament which offers an exchange platform to academies and scientific societies; associations; research centers and institutions; university labs, clusters, and departments; journals, publishers, media and scholars coming from Europe and the surrounding regions’ (see https://www.europeanacademyofreligion.org/missionstatement).

With over 900 participants, the new research initiative was off to an impressive start this week. Some of the highlights for me included:

Panel on ’The Future of Freedom of Religion: International Perspectives’, chaired by Ana Maria Celis (Chile, President of the International Consortium for Law and Religion Studies), with Mark Hill (Cardiff University), Elizabeth Clark (Brigham Young University, Provo), Asher Maoz (Peres Academic Center, Tel Aviv) and Juan Navarro Floria (Pontificia Universidad Católica, Buenos Aires) presenting.

Panel on ’Commonwealth as Crossroads: Freedom of Religion or Belief (FoRB) in the Commonwealth of Nations’, with Fabio Petito (University of Sussex), Erin Wilson (University of Groningen), Monica Toft (Tufts University), Ahmed Garba (Bauchi State University, Nigeria) and M. Christian Green (Commonwealth Initiative for Freedom of Religion or Belief)  as speakers.

Panel on ‘Religious Universities and Professional Education: Positive Influence or Prejudicial Effect?’, chaired by Jessica Giles (The Open University), with Elizabeth Clark (Brigham Young University) and Michael P. Moreland (Villanova University) presenting

I am furthermore grateful for the extraordinarily valuable feedback received after the presentation of my paper on ‘Comparative Constitutional Law and Natural Law’ during my own panel ‘Courts and Religion. Approaches and Perspectives’:

8/124

Courts and Religion. Approaches and Perspectives

Chair: Hans-Martien ten Napel (Leiden Law School)

Speakers:
• Mason Taylor (The Open University), The European Court of Human Rights: Substantive and Institutional Shifts Towards Religious Symbols

• Hans-Martien ten Napel (Leiden Law School), Comparative Constitutional Law and Natural Law

Language: English

10.30-12.30 Aemilia Hotel, Sala Bibiena

 

See also:

Upcoming Speaking Engagement: Annual Conference of the European Academy of Religion, Bologna, March 5-8, 2018

Press Release: ‘Twelve ILS seed money grants for frontier research at Leiden Law School’

Podcast of the Law and Religious Freedom Book Panel at the Annual Meetings of the American Academy of Religion and the Society of Biblical Literature in Boston, MA

On Islam (Volume six of the Abraham Kuyper Collected Works in Public Theology series)

At the beginning of the twentieth century, famed theologian Abraham Kuyper toured the Mediterranean world and encountered Islam for the first time.

Part travelogue, part cultural critique, On Islam presents a European imperialist seeing firsthand the damage colonialism had caused and the value of a religion he had never truly understood. Here, Kuyper’s doctrine of common grace shines as he displays a nuanced and respectful understanding of the Muslim world. Though an ardent Calvinist, Kuyper still knew that God’s grace is expressed to unbelievers. Kuyper saw Islam as a culture and religion with much to offer the West, but also as a threat to the gospel of Jesus Christ. Here he expresses a balanced view of early twentieth-century Islam that demands attention from the majority world today as well. Essays by prominent scholars bookend the volume, showing the relevance of these teachings in our time.’

Source, and (order) information:

https://www.lexhampress.com/products/138756/on-islam?utm_source=abrahamkuyper.com&utm_medium=button&utm_campaign=lexhampress2015q4&ssi=0

 

Abraham Kuyper’s conviction that religion constitutes the ‘marrow’ of each culture, motivated him to pay frequent attention to the role of Islam, among other things, in the different countries he visited on his journey around the Mediterranean Sea. Similarly, comparative scholars of law and religion should be willing also to investigate the way transcendent perspectives have potentially shaped, and in many cases may well continue to influence, the particular legal systems they study. Public theology of the kind contained in this book can inspire and inform them on their way.

See also:

Book Launch and Panel Discussion: Abraham Kuyper’s Perspective on Islam

Article ‘Princeton Seminary Reforms Its Views on Honoring Tim Keller’

Lemma on the Kuyper cabinet (1901-1905)

Video Recording of Panel ‘Religion and Pluralism in a Changing World’

‘The recordings of the 24th Annual International Law and Religion Symposium, Religion and Religious FreeDom in a Changing World, held in October of 2017 are now available to view here. (…)’

You can find the link to the video recording of the panel on ‘religion and pluralism in a changing world’ here:  https://www.iclrs.org/event.php/2017+Annual+Symposium/Media/English/3959

‘Religion and Pluralism in a Changing World

Full recording
Jane Wise – Moderator Associate Director, International Center for Law and Religion Studies, J. Reuben Clark Law School, Brigham Young University
John Carpay President, Justice Centre for Constitutional Freedoms
Daniel Cere Professor, School of Religious Studies, McGill University
Hans-Martien ten Napel Professor, Leiden Law School, Institute of Public Law’

See also:

Paper presentation during panel on ‘Religion & Pluralism in a Changing World’, BYU Law School, Provo, Utah

Upcoming Speaking Engagement: 24th Annual International Law and Religion Symposium, Brigham Young University, Provo, Utah, 1-4 October 2017

Nieuwsbericht ‘Hans-Martien ten Napel neemt deel aan boekpanel over recht en godsdienstvrijheid tijdens jaarvergadering van de American Academy of Religion in Boston, MA’

Upcoming Speaking Engagement: 24th Annual International Law and Religion Symposium, Brigham Young University, Provo, Utah, 1-4 October 2017

 

‘The International Center for Law and Religion Studies (ICLRS) is honored to announce the distinguished keynote speaker for the 24th Annual International Law and Religion Symposium — “Religion and Religious Freedom in a Changing World” — to be held 1-4 October 2017 at Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah. András Sajó, Hungarian scholar and former Judge of the European Court of Human Rights, and Ján Figeľ, the European Commission’s Special Envoy for promotion of freedom of religion or belief outside the European Union, will speak at the opening session of the Symposium, to be held on Sunday evening, October 1, in the Moot Court Room (303) of the J. Reuben Clark Law School.

The opening session will be streamed live, beginning at 7 pm MST (UTC-7), to listeners worldwide. Interpretation at the venue will be available in 11 languages: Arabic, French, Italian, Korean, Laotian, Mongolian, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish, Ukrainian, and Vietnamese.

Please note that, due to space limitations, the Symposium is open to invited participants only. However, all plenary sessions and other sessions held in Room 303 JRCB will be streamed live, and audio and video recordings of other sessions will be available soon after the event on the Center’s website and on YouTube.  (See recordings from Symposium 2016 here.)’

Source, and more information:

Symposium 2017: “Religion and Religious Freedom in a Changing World”

See also:

Press Release: ‘Hans-Martien ten Napel has book published “Constitutionalism, Democracy and Religious Freedom. To Be Fully Human”’

Public Lecture by Professor Brett Scharffs on ‘Why Religious Freedom’, April 7, 15.00h, Free University, Amsterdam

Article ‘This Map Of The State Of Religious Freedom Around The World Is Chilling’

 

Workshop Law and Religion

Date
26 June 2017
Time
10:00 – 12:00  hrs.
Address
Kamerlingh Onnes Building
Steenschuur 25
2311 ES Leiden
Room
A014

On June 26th, a small workshop on comparative law & religion will take place with Dr. Jaclyn Neo (National University of Singapore, Law School). Jaclyn is a very well-published scholar in the field of comparative public law and human rights, particularly in the field of law and religion (see bio below). She studied at Yale Law School (LLM, JSD) and she is an Assistant Professor of Public Law at the National University of Singapore. She is an innovative thinker and a wonderful speaker. On June 26, Jaclyn will present one of her most recent papers and engage with  her audience’s questions. Hans-Martien Ten Napel will act as discussant and Sofia Fernandes Da Silva Ranchordás will chair the workshop. Both colleagues and students are welcome!

You can register for the workshop by sending an email to Sofia, preferably by June 10. Should you be interested in presenting a recent paper, pitching your PhD research or discussing a new research idea on law and religion or freedom of expression so as to receive some feedback from an expert in this field, please let Sofia know. Due to time constraints, only 2-3 additional presentations can be accepted.

Source: https://www.universiteitleiden.nl/en/events/2017/06/workshop-law-and-religion.

See also:

International Conference on “The Rule of Law with Chinese Characteristics in Transition”;

Blogpost ‘Religious Freedom, Eastern Ethical Monism, and Western “Civic Totalism”‘.

Public Lecture by Professor Brett Scharffs on ‘Why Religious Freedom’, April 7, 15.00h, Free University, Amsterdam

UPDATE: For location, and registration, see here: http://centre-religion-law.org/nl/actueel/50-lezing-why-religous-freedom-7-april.

The full title of the paper which Professor Brett Scharffs will present, is: ‘Why Religious Freedom? Why the Religiously Committed, the Religiously Indifferent and Those Hostile to Religion Should Care’.

The abstract of the paper reads as follows:

‘Religious freedom: Is it the grandparent of human rights, or the neglected stepchild? As with most false dichotomies, the answer is both. But it is also the underappreciated core, or tap root, of human rights. Why should we care about religious freedom? For the seeker of religious truth, the answer may be obvious: Religious freedom creates the conditions, the “constitutional space,” for investigation and the pursuit of truth. But what about those who fall into other groups? What about the religiously committed – who are confident they are in possession of religious truth. Or the religiously indifferent – who are not much interested in religion or spirituality. Or those who are affirmatively hostile to religion – those who believe religion does more harm than good. Should they – should we – care about religious freedom? There are three reasons why we should all care deeply about freedom of religion (and belief). First, is the role of religious freedom as a historical foundation for constitutional, political, civil and human rights. Without freedom of religion and belief (FORB), the entire human rights project may collapse from its own weight. Second, FORB is necessary if we are to resist statism and other monistic views of state power. And third, we may not have the intellectual, political or rhetorical resources to defend conscience if we do not respect and protect FORB.’

You can read the full paper here: https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=2911086##.

Brett G. Scharffs is Francis R. Kirkham Professor of Law at Brigham Young University Law School, and was appointed Director of the Law School’s International Center for Law and Religion Studies effective May 1, 2016.

The lecture is organized by the Centre for Religion and Law, a collaboration between the Faculty of Law and the Faculty of Theology of the VU University Amsterdam, and the newly formed Netherlands Law and Religion Scholars Network.

For more information (in Dutch) on the Centre for Religion and Law and the Netherlands Law and Religion Scholars Network, see http://centre-religion-law.org/nl/.

Presentation during Cardiff Festival for Law and Religion

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‘The Cardiff Festival of Law and Religion on May 5th and 6th at Cardiff University celebrates the twenty-fifth anniversary of the LLM in Canon Law at Cardiff University, the first degree of its type in a British University since the Reformation.

A number of events are being held to reflect upon how the study of Law and Religion has developed over the last twenty-five years and the likely future trajectory. This includes the 2016 Law and Religion Scholars Network (LARSN) Conference, a keynote address by Professor David Little, a celebratory dinner and the launch of F Cranmer, M Hill, C Kenny and R Sandberg (ed) The Confluence of Law and Religion: Interdisciplinary Reflections on the Work of Norman Doe (Cambridge University Press, 2016).’

My own presentation was entitled: ‘The “New Critics of Religious Freedom” and the Inspiration they Unintentionally Provide’.

The summary of the paper reads as follows:

The ‘New Critics of Religious Freedom’ have become increasingly vocal of late. The first part of the paper will summarise their main criticisms, some of which contain a considerable amount of truth, such as that the right to freedom of religion or belief has historically been heavily influenced by Christianity in general and Protestantism in particular.

The second part of the paper will argue that at first sight there also appears to be one major downside to the criticisms. As it turns out to be hardly possible to isolate the right to freedom of religion or belief from the general idea of a democratic constitutional state, what the critics are really questioning is the current state of Western liberal democracy as a whole.

The third part of the paper will propose that the reason for this close connection between religious freedom and the democratic constitutional state lies in the fact that the latter has clearly been influenced by Christianity as well. Still, the new critics of religious freedom may on closer inspection also serve as a source of inspiration for a necessary, theologically driven reform of some of the central tenets of liberal democracy as it has developed in recent decades.

For more information, see: http://www.law.cf.ac.uk/clr/networks/The%20Cardiff%20Festival%20for%20Law%20and%20Religion%20Full%20Programme.pdf.