Tag Archives: natural law

Call for Papers, Panel on Public Theology and its potential for Law and Religion scholarship

I am currently putting together a panel for the 2018 conference of the European Academy of Religion on the question of what, if anything, law and religion scholarship can learn from public theology works such as James K.A. Smith’s Awaiting the King. Anyone interested in joining the panel, please let me know. The draft description of the panel reads as follows:

This panel considers James K.A. Smith’s Cultural Liturgies (Desiring the King, Imagining the King, Awaiting the King) and discusses the potential for scholars in Law and Religion to engage with his public theology along the lines of the legal-theological approach as recently suggested by Stefanus Hendrianto in the journal Law and Method. The panel examines Smith’s reservations concerning natural law doctrine as can be found in Judaism, Christianity, and Islam, among other traditions. It explores the potential to use perspectives from Smith’s public theology – in connection with other Christians thinkers such as Augustine – as a legal-theoretical alternative to ideas advanced by Ronald Dworkin and Jürgen Habermas. It will further consider the relevance of Smith’s work in the more general context of public administration. The organizers welcome paper proposals engaging other public theologies than Smith’s, as long as the focus remains on their potential for law and religion scholarship.

For information on the conference, see: https://www.europeanacademyofreligion.org/general-information

See also:

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

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

Law and Religious Freedom Book Panel at the Annual Meetings of the American Academy of Religion and the Society of Biblical Literature, Boston, Friday, November 17, 2017, 4 PM – 6 PM EST (II)

 

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’:

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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

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

I will be speaking on the topic of ‘Comparative Constitutional Law and Natural Law.’

The abstract reads as follows:

During the last decade or so the discipline of comparative constitutional law has experienced phenomenal growth. Handbooks in the field have become truly global in outlook.

With the globalization of comparative constitutional law, the question arises which standards should be applied to evaluate different legal arrangements? Alternatively, the field would alter into an empirical discipline that merely registers how such mechanisms differ around the globe.

In a not so distant past, it would still have made sense to use religion as a source of inspiration to evaluate different constitutional arrangements. Using faith is not an option anymore, however, as most political orders are rooted in religious cultures. Within the West, moreover, constitutionalism is increasingly separated from religion.

In the proposed paper, following the work of Santiago Legarre among others, I will suggest that the idea of natural law is a serious candidate to serve as a normative framework.

For more information on the program of the conference, see: https://www.europeanacademyofreligion.org/program

‘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 also:

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

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

Paper presentation during XXI World Congress of the International Association for the History of Religions

Participant, ‘The Quest for Legitimacy: Actors, Audiences and Aspirations’, 2017 APSA Annual Meeting, San Francisco, CA, August 31-September 3 (II)

Three personal highlights of this year’s meeting of the American Political Science Association were:

Thursday:

David Azerrad (The Heritage Foundation), Carson L. Holloway (University of Nebraska, Omaha), Michael M. Uhlmann (Claremont Graduate University), and Christopher Wolfe (University of Dallas), discussing: ‘American Public Philosophy in the Age of Trump’.

Friday:

Peter R.W. Cross (Hillsdale College), Justin B. Dyer (University of Missouri, Columbia), Douglas Kries (Gonzaga University), Adam Seagrave (University of Missouri, Columbia), and Lee Ward (Baylor University) (picture), panel: ‘On the Compatibility of Natural Law and Natural Rights’.

Saturday:

Darren Patrick Guerra (Biola University), Amy E. Black (Wheaton College), Kevin R. Den Dulk (Calvin College) (picture), and J. Christopher Soper (Pepperdine University), panel: ‘Honoring Stephen Monsma: His Life and Work’.

Top picture: booth reception Routledge, publisher of Constitutionalism, Democracy and Religious Freedom. To Be Fully Human (2017).

See also:

Participant, ‘The Quest for Legitimacy: Actors, Audiences and Aspirations’, 2017 APSA Annual Meeting, San Francisco, CA, August 31-September 3 (I).

 

 

Participant, ‘The Quest for Legitimacy: Actors, Audiences and Aspirations’, 2017 APSA Annual Meeting, San Francisco, CA, August 31-September 3 (I)

Topics include:

  • New Perspectives on Montesquieu
  • The Crisis of Constitutional Democracy
  • American Public Philosophy in the Age of Trump
  • On the Compatibility of Natural Law and Natural Rights
  • Author Meets Critics: Alexander Tsesis’s “Constitutional Ethos”
  • Liberalism in Crisis
  • Challenges to the Rule of Law
  • The Future of Conservatism
  • Constitution Making in Religiously Divided Societies

See for more information about the program: http://web.apsanet.org/apsa2017/.

See also:

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

Participant, ‘Great Transformations: Political Science and the Big Questions of Our Time’, 2016 APSA Annual Meeting, Philadelphia, PA, September 1-4

Participant, Acton University, June 20-23 2017, Grand Rapids, Michigan (I)

Source: CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=240138

This week I will be attending the 2017 Acton University Conference, at DeVos Place, Grand Rapids, Michigan.

Acton University ‘is a unique, four-day exploration of the intellectual foundations of a free society. Guided by a distinguished, international faculty, Acton University is an opportunity to deepen your knowledge and integrate philosophy, theology, business, development – with sound, market based, economics.’

It is organized by the Acton Institute, ‘a think-tank whose mission is to promote a free and virtuous society characterized by individual liberty and sustained by religious principles’.

Topics dealt with include:

Thomas Jefferson v. Alexander Hamilton

The Inspiration of the Declaration: What Calvin Coolidge’s Views on Government and Faith Tell Us Today

John Locke’s Philosophy of Liberalism

Edmund Burke and the Origins of Modern Conservatism

Alexis de Tocqueville: Does Liberty Follow from Democracy?

Democracy and Development

Natural Law and Human Flourishing

“Post-Consensus” Culture and Natural Law

Religious Liberty: The Dawn of the First Amendment

The Religious Problem with Religious Freedom

Marriage and Religious Liberty

How to Understand and Critique Secularism

Presenters will be, among others:

Ryan Anderson, Ph.D., William E. Simon Senior Research Fellow in American Principles and Public Policy, The Heritage Foundation

Hunter Baker, J.D., Ph.D., University Fellow and Associate Professor of Political Science, Union University

The Honorable Judge Janice Rogers Brown, Circuit Judge, U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit

Lenore Ealy, Ph.D., President, The Philanthropic Enterprise, Inc.

Kenneth Grasso, Ph.D., Professor and Chair of Political Science, Texas State University

Carrie Gress, Ph.D., Author and Public Intellectual

Robert Joustra, Ph.D., Director of the Centre for Christian Scholarship, Redeemer University College

Daniel Mark, Ph.D., Professor of Political Science, Villanova University, and Chairman of the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF)

Russell Moore, President of the Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention

Svetlana Papazov, D.Min., Lead Pastor, Real Life Church; CEO & Founder, Real Life Center for Entrepreneurial and Leadership Excellence

John Pinheiro, Ph.D., Professor of History and Founding Director of Catholic Studies, Aquinas College

Amity Shlaes, Presidential Scholar, The King’s College.

Sources, and more informationActon UniversityActon Institute.

See alsoUpcoming Speaking Engagement: Symposium The Federalist Papers, Brussel, 20 april 2017

Upcoming Speaking Engagement, Journal of Law, Religion & State International Conference: Rule of Law – Religious Perspectives, Bar-Ilan University School of Law, Ramat-Gan, Israel

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‘The encounter of religion with the rule of law may generate tension but also mutual inspiration. The rule of law implies law’s supremacy over other normative systems and personal commitments. It also implies that law applies to everyone equally. Religion represents a normative system that may in some areas be different from – and stand in opposition to – state law. Religion may deny the supremacy of state law and pose divine law as supreme instead. It may, alternatively, seek exemptions from state law in those matters where the two conflict.

TOPICS: In this conference we seek to study this tension and discuss the following questions:
– Does religion (in general or a specific religion) accept the rule of state law?
– What are the boundaries (if any) of such acceptance?
– In what cases would religion challenge state law and in what cases would it seek exemptions?
– Can a policy of multiculturalism and of legal pluralism, which give more room to religious freedom, be reconciled with the rule of law or does it undermine it?
– What other policies should states follow in response to these tensions?

Religion may not only compete with state law but also inspire it, which leads us to investigate religion’s various understandings of the rule of law. Here is just one example. The concept of law in the context of the rule of law is ambiguous and open to different interpretations. Some (positivists) understand law as a set of rules fixed by social institutions, and others (natural law advocates) understand law as if it includes fundamental principles of justice and morality. Religions may take a position in that debate and contribute not only to the abstract understanding of law, but also to the identification of those moral principles that are part of law. We therefore also plan to explore the following:
– What is the position of religion with regard to the concept of law and the rule of law?
– Many religions developed partial or comprehensive legal systems of their own. Did religions also develop a concept of rule of law? What is its scope and meaning?
– The concept of rule of law also may be used in theological context as a metaphor to understand the boundaries of divine actions and intervention in the world. Is God constrained by law – and by what kind of law: law of nature, morality?

These and similar questions will be discussed in an international conference that will be held at Bar-Ilan University School of Law, Ramat-Gan, Israel, on November 20-22, 2016.’

Source: http://www.ssrn.com/update/lsn/lsnann/ann16021.html. More information will follow.

Participant, Conference on Law and the Culture of Liberty, James Madison Program (May 18-19, 2015)

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This Robert J. Giuffra ’82 Conference was co-sponsored by The Association for the Study of Free Institutions, Texas Tech University and the Bouton Law Lecture Fund:

‘What is the relationship among law, culture, and human freedom? Is freedom to be found primarily where law is kept to a minimum and culture is therefore mostly the spontaneous reflection of the choices of largely autonomous individuals? Or does true freedom require law to provide a kind of moral discipline, a habituation in the virtues, with a view to promoting a culture in which freedom is directed toward the ourishing of our nature, and not just toward whatever may appear desirable to the individual? To what extent can law shape culture in this way, and to what extent is it rather shaped by a culture that already exists?

In order to foster re ection on these issues, the James Madison Program in American Ideals and Institutions and the Association for the Study of Free Institutions are pleased to announce a conference entitled “Law and the Culture of Liberty.” The program includes scholars from a variety of disciplines in the social sciences and humanities. We seek to address a number of questions. What is the proper relationship between law and liberty in the natural-law jurisprudence of John Finnis and his colleagues? To what extent does our ourishing according to nature require freedom from legal constraint, and to what extent does it require the discipline of legal sanctions? How does contemporary American popular culture shape our understanding of law and liberty? Is pop culture a powerful force for freedom, or does it undermine the virtues of character and mind necessary for the preservation of the free society? What is the role of marriage in fostering a culture of liberty? To what extent does a healthy marriage culture require the support of law? What is the role of freedom of thought and speech in maintaining a free and decent culture? Should law permit an untrammeled right of self-expression, or must it rather set limits on what may be said in order to protect civility and other important social values? Most fundamentally, can we attain rational knowledge of the true character of law, of culture, and of liberty, and of their proper relation to one another?’

For source, and conference schedule, see:

http://web.princeton.edu/sites/jmadison/calendar/documents/Program%202015%20051819%20May%20Conf.pdf.

About the James Madison Program:

‘Founded in the summer of 2000, the James Madison Program in American Ideals and Institutions in the Department of Politics at Princeton University is dedicated to exploring enduring questions of American constitutional law and Western political thought. The Program is also devoted to examining the application of basic legal and ethical principles to contemporary problems. To realize its mission, the James Madison Program implements a number of initiatives. The Program awards visiting fellowships and postdoctoral appointments each year to support scholars conducting research in the elds of constitutional law and political thought. The Program supports the James Madison Society, an international community of scholars, and promotes civic education by its sponsorship of conferences, lectures, seminars, and colloquia. The Program’s Undergraduate Fellows Forum provides opportunities for Princeton undergraduates to interact with Madison Program Fellows and speakers. The success of the James Madison Program depends on the support of foundations and private individuals who share its commitment in advancing the understanding and appreciation of American ideals and institutions.’