Tag Archives: constitutionalism

New review of book on Constitutionalism, Democracy and Religious Freedom. To Be Fully Human (2017) in Ecclesiastical Law Journal

A new review of my book on Constitutionalism, Democracy and Religious Freedom. To Be Fully Human (2017) in the Ecclesiastical Law Journal:

‘This book is an enjoyably spry reflection on the pitfalls of aggressive secularism and the atomistic tendencies of modern liberal individualism. Ten Napel deploys comparative legal method, interdisciplinary scholarship and social pluralist thought from Burke to neo-Calvinism (pp 12–18) but does not try to reinvent the wheel; the book’s thesis and scope are refreshingly modest. (…)

Ten Napel makes several important contributions. He paints a compelling picture of the deleterious effects of the 1960s revolution on liberalism. Anyone concerned with the fact that “liberal” is fast becoming a term of abuse will find much to admire here. He does a very good job of collating international strands of pluralism and committing them to the defence of a strong civil society. For a fellow traveller more familiar with the Anglo-German school of pluralism (Gierke, Maitland and Figgis), the exotic sources on display are fascinating novelties. Napel’s gentle conservatism never strays into polemic and this makes his timely plea for a more historically literate, culturally grounded and community-oriented vision of religious liberty all the more potent.’

Read the full review here:

https://www.cambridge.org/core/journals/ecclesiastical-law-journal/article/constitutionalism-democracy-and-religious-freedom-to-be-fully-human-hansmartien-ten-napel-routledge-london-2017-ix-169-pp-hardback-10500-isbn-9781138647152/311E9C67DB049649CD22217024336620

See also:

Article ‘Institutional Religious Freedom in Review’

Book Review of Constitutionalism, Democracy and Religious Freedom in Journal of Markets & Morality

Review of book on ‘Constitutionalism, Democracy and Religious Freedom. To Be Fully Human’

Upcoming Paperback Release

Pleased to announce that the editorial board of Routledge have decided to publish my book Constitutionalism, Democracy and Religious Freedom. To Be Fully Human (2017) in paperback. They anticipate publication in March 2019.

Preview PDF here: https://www.taylorfrancis.com/books/9781317236917?fbclid=IwAR0aiJiTnvOvWAv57HCS1vkwLAiNNTp1BU96knPp-GC4MGxh5P6DB82JzWw

A Media Review Copy Request Form for my book is available here: https://pages.email.taylorandfrancis.com/review-copy-request

For some earlier reviews of the book, see:

“Liberalism’s got problems. On this, most of us can agree. Hans-Martien ten Napel’s newest book is no exception to that emerging consensus. Ten Napel’s book is part of the zeitgeist of new sensational works on the crisis of liberalism, James K.A. Smith’s Awaiting the King and Patrick Deneen’s Why Liberalism Failed, which argue that we have hit ‘peak liberalism.’ Happily, ten Napel seems far less pessimistic, though. Rather, as Charles Taylor would describe his own work in A Secular Age, it is a kind of loyal opposition to constitutional liberalism: not a revolutionary attempt to dispose of it, but an effort to alert us to the resources inside liberalism’s own often forgotten or marginalized canon, especially religious ones, that may enlarge its virtues and minimize its vices.” Robert Joustra, Review of Faith & International Affairs (https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/15570274.2018.1469823?journalCode=rfia20&).

“To sum up, the book Constitutionalism, Democracy and Religious Freedom: To Be Fully Human is a well-written text on such important issues for contemporary societies as freedom of religion or belief in its communal form, freedom of conscience, and civic activity. It attempts to show an integral approach to the human being. This integral approach should strive to create such an ethos in which a full development of the human being is possible. By a full development is meant such a condition in which this being can manifest his or her beliefs not only within the privacy of his or her home but also in public without any fear of oppression or discrimination. If citizens are forced to hide their religious views, they are doomed to be inauthentic selves, and will always feel a kind of schizophrenia.” Prof. Jan Klos Hab. Ph.D., Journal of Markets and Morality (https://www.marketsandmorality.com/index.php/mandm/article/view/1331).

“Ten Napel heeft al met al een heel fraai boek opgeleverd. Het is vooral ook een boek dat het verdient breder gelezen te worden dan binnen de kringen van de internationale constitutionele rechtswetenschap. Juist ook voor het Nederlandse publieke debat vormt dit boek nadrukkelijk een theoretische versterking tegenover al te secularistische (en daarmee potentieel zelfondermijnende) benaderingen van democratie, rechtsstaat en religieuze vrijheid. Er staat, kortom, veel op het spel met deze thematiek. Niets minder dan To be fully human.'” R.J. (Robert) van Putten MSc MA, Radix. Tijdschrift over geloof, wetenschap en samenleving. https://www.forumc.nl/radix/recente-nummers/773-radix-nummer-2-2019 (https://www.forumc.nl/radix/recente-nummers/773-radix-nummer-2-2019).

“Ten Napel’s book is illuminating precisely because he begins by accepting the fact of deep differences of worldview, both in concepts and in practices, and by assuming as the default for public policy the accommodation of diversity, rather than a striving for uniformity. This means giving full value to non-religious, along with religious, reasons not to go along with the public consensus and generally accepted laws. Also, especially, fully to accept that civil society–nonprofits, houses of worship, companies–is a major component of our lives and not to be ignored in considering how to achieve a unity that respects diversity.” Dr. Stanley Carlson-Thies (http://www.irfalliance.org/institutional-religious-freedom-in-review/).

Author profile:

https://www.routledge.com/authors/i18338-hans-martien-ten-napel

Winner of the International Award for Excellence for The International Journal of Religion and Spirituality in Society, Volume 8

‘Champaign, Ill., USA – 16 November 2018 – The Religion in Society Research Network is pleased to announce the selection of “The Significance of Communal Religious Freedom for Liberal Democracy,” Hans-Martien ten Napel, as the winner of the International Award for Excellence for Volume 8 of The International Journal of Religion and Spirituality in Society. This article was selected for the award from among the highest-ranked articles emerging from the peer-review process and according to the selection criteria outlined in the peer-review guidelines.

About The International Journal of Religion and Spirituality in Society: The International Journal of Religion and Spirituality in Society aims to create an intellectual frame of reference for the academic study of religion and spirituality and to create an interdisciplinary conversation on the role of religion and spirituality in society. The journal addresses the need for critical discussion on religious issues—specifically as they are situated in the present-day contexts of ethics, warfare, politics, anthropology, sociology, education, leadership, artistic engagement, and the dissonance or resonance between religious tradition and modern trends.’

About the awarded article:

The main argument of my recent book Constitutionalism, Democracy and Religious Freedom. To Be Fully Human (Routledge, 2017) is that the so-called ‘New Critics of Religious Freedom’ in fact, consciously or unconsciously, criticize liberal democracy as such. Now, it has become quite common for liberal democracy to be criticized not just outside the West, but also from within the West. My book constitutes an exception to this rule in that it is written in defense of liberal democracy and, consequently, also in defense of the so-called liberal conception of the right to religious freedom. The awarded article reflects the same argument that the book aims to make. Earlier versions of the article were presented during the XXI World Congress of the International Association for the History of Religions, Erfurt, Germany, 23-29 August 2015; the Cardiff Festival for Law and Religion, Cardiff, Wales, 5-6 May 2017; and the Annual Conference of the International Society of Public Law, Copenhagen, Denmark, 5-7 July 2017. In its emphasis on the role of anthropology, among other things, the article also reflects the Acton University Conference in Grand Rapids, Michigan, that I attended from 20-23 June 2017. If I remember correctly, I wrote its final draft during the flight home from that occasion. I am grateful to the two anonymous referees from whose comments on that draft the article benefited greatly. Hopefully, the publication of this article and the current award will help to open the eyes of scholars outside my discipline to what I consider to be the beauty of liberal democracy in general and the right to religious freedom in particular as it was initially conceived during the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries.

Read the awarded article here: https://religioninsociety.com/journal/awards#block-2.

See also:

Article on ‘The Significance of Communal Religious Freedom for Liberal Democracy’ in the International Journal of Religion & Spirituality in Society

Artikel ‘Geloof in de liberale democratie’ in Tijdschrift voor Religie, Recht en Beleid

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

 

Book Review of Constitutionalism, Democracy and Religious Freedom in Journal of Markets & Morality

I am grateful to Prof. Jan Klos Hab. Ph.D. for taking the effort to write a review of my book for the Journal of Markets & Morality.

Jan Klos is a Professor at the John Paul II Catholic University of Lublin, Poland, Faculty of Philosophy, Department of Particular Ethics. He specializes in the history of social and political doctrines. Courses taught include philosophical foundations of political doctrines, foundations of American democracy, and political system of America.

In the review, Klos raises several interesting points regarding the book, to which I hope to respond some other time.

On p. 206, Prof. Klos writes:

‘The author does well to stress the importance of such nonstate actors as families and schools in the efforts to check the power of the state. Political and legal constitutionalism collaborate, as we know, in the separation between the legislative, the executive, and the judiciary. This kind of separation, however, does not in and of itself suffice for a mature civil society to be formed. I think that this point should be especially emphasized. With regard to constitutionalism and the right to freedom of religion or belief, more is needed than separation of political and legal powers. As Professor ten Napel writes, one should also “acknowledge that a communal dimension to this right exists” (148).’

The review ends as follows:

‘To sum up, the book Constitutionalism, Democracy and Religious Freedom: To Be Fully Human is a well-written text on such important issues for contemporary societies as freedom of religion or belief in its communal form, freedom of conscience, and civic activity. It attempts to show an integral approach to the human being. This integral approach should strive to create such an ethos in which a full development of the human being is possible. By a full development is meant such a condition in which this being can manifest his or her beliefs not only within the privacy of his or her home but also in public without any fear of oppression or discrimination. If citizens are forced to hide their religious views, they are doomed to be inauthentic selves, and will always feel a kind of schizophrenia.’

You can read the whole review here:

http://www.marketsandmorality.com/index.php/mandm/issue/view/43

‘Journal of Markets & Morality is a peer-reviewed academic journal published by the Acton Institute for the Study of Religion & Liberty. The journal promotes intellectual exploration of the relationship between economics and morality from both social science and theological perspectives.’

See also:

Review of book on ‘Constitutionalism, Democracy and Religious Freedom. To Be Fully Human’

Boekbespreking van Constitutionalism, Democracy and Religious Freedom. To Be Fully Human in Radix. Tijdschrift over geloof, wetenschap en samenleving

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

Review of book on ‘Constitutionalism, Democracy and Religious Freedom. To Be Fully Human’

UPDATE: see also this press release in Dutch:

https://geloofindemocratie.nl/2018/07/04/boekrecensie-constitutionalism-democracy-and-religious-freedom-to-be-fully-human-2017/

Very grateful to Robert Joustra for taking the time to write this review of my book for the Review of Faith & International Affairs – worth the read also because of the other literature he references along the way and the difficult questions it raises:

https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/15570274.2018.1469823?journalCode=rfia20

‘The Review of Faith & International Affairs is published out of the Center on Faith & International Affairs (CFIA) at the Institute for Global Engagement.’

See also:

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

Interview on project on ‘Constitutionalism, Democracy and Religious Freedom’

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 at 4 PM – 6 PM EST

 

Artikel ‘Geloof in de liberale democratie’ in Tijdschrift voor Religie, Recht en Beleid

 

De liberale visie op godsdienstvrijheid vertrekt vanuit een mensvisie waarin het belang van het kunnen beleven van de religieuze identiteit in zowel het publieke als het privédomein vooropstaat. Dit uitgangspunt leidt tot een onderscheidende visie op de plaats van geloof in de liberale democratie, die het voor burgers omgekeerd mogelijk maakt geloof te houden in de liberale democratie. Door deze mensvisie te veronachtzamen lopen nieuwe critici van de godsdienstvrijheid het gevaar de liberale democratie als doel te gaan zien en burgers als middel om dit doel te bereiken. Dit kan op termijn het geloof in de liberale democratie doen verminderen.

Lees hier het volledige (Nederlandstalige) artikel over een van de centrale stellingen uit mijn recente boek Constitutionalism, Democracy and Religious Freedom. To Be Fully Human (Routledge, 2017) (artikel vrij beschikbaar via Open Access):

Geloof in de liberale democratie

Zie voorts:

Upcoming Speaking Engagement: (A)theïsme. Brengt religie meer vrede, of meer oorlog?, De Balie, 8 april 2018

New Facebook Page on Constitutionalism, Democracy and Religious Freedom. To Be Fully Human

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

 

New Facebook Page on Constitutionalism, Democracy and Religious Freedom. To Be Fully Human (II)

I am grateful for well over 1,250 genuinely global followers of my new Facebook ‘Business’ Page in just one week time and look forward to welcoming many more.

Take a look at last week’s posts here:

https://www.facebook.com/ConstitutionalismDemocracyandReligiousFreedom/.

See also:

New Facebook Page on Constitutionalism, Democracy and Religious Freedom. To Be Fully Human

Twelve posts introducing my new book on Constitutionalism, Democracy and Religious Freedom. To Be Fully Human

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

New Facebook Page on Constitutionalism, Democracy and Religious Freedom. To Be Fully Human

I recently started this Facebook ‘Business’ Page about my book Constitutionalism, Democracy and Religious Freedom. To Be Fully Human:

https://www.facebook.com/ConstitutionalismDemocracyandReligiousFreedom/

But it is more than that. It is also about an ongoing project on roughly the same topics in a global context. I invite you to like the page to get regular updates.

See also:

Geloof in de liberale democratie (I): Inleiding

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

Video: Hans-Martien ten Napel on constitutionalism, democracy and religious freedom

 

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

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’