Legal Responses to Religious Practices in the United States: Accomodation and its Limits

Legal Responses to Religious Practices in the United States: Accomodation and its Limits

by Austin Sarat (Editor)


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There is an enormous scholarly literature on law's treatment of religion. Most scholars now recognize that although the U.S. Supreme Court has not offered a consistent interpretation of what “non-establishment” or religious freedom means, as a general matter it can be said that the First Amendment requires that government not give preference to one religion over another or, although this is more controversial, to religion over non-belief. But these rules raise questions that will be addressed in Legal Responses to Religious Practices in the United States: Namely, what practices constitute a “religious activity” such that it cannot be supported or funded by government? And what is a religion, anyway? How should law understand matters of faith and accommodate religious practices?

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781107692442
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Publication date: 06/05/2014
Pages: 324
Product dimensions: 5.98(w) x 9.02(h) x 0.67(d)

About the Author

Austin Sarat is William Nelson Cromwell Professor of Jurisprudence Political Science at Amherst College and Justice Hugo L. Black Senior Faculty Scholar at the University of Alabama School of Law. He is author or editor of more than seventy books, including The Road to Abolition?: The Future of Capital Punishment in the United States; The Killing State: Capital Punishment in Law, Politics, and Culture; When the State Kills: Capital Punishment and the American Condition; The Cultural Lives of Capital Punishment: Comparative Perspectives, Law, Violence; Possibility of Justice, Pain, Death, and the Law; Mercy on Trial: What it Means to Stop an Execution; When Law Fails: Making Sense of Miscarriages of Justice; and the two-volume Capital Punishment. Sarat is editor of the journal Law, Culture and the Humanities and Studies in Law, Politics and Society. He is currently writing a book entitled Hollywood's Law: Film, Fatherhood, and the Legal Imagination. His book, When Government Breaks the Law: Prosecuting the Bush Administration, was recognized as one of the best books of 2010 by the Huffington Post. In May 2008 Providence College awarded Sarat with an honorary degree in recognition of his pioneering work in the development of legal study in the liberal arts and his distinguished scholarship on capital punishment in the United States.

Table of Contents

1. A history of ambivalence: how religion and US law have developed together Amanda Porterfield; 2. Commentary on religion's accommodation to American law and culture Timothy Hoff; 3. Against neutralism: faith based groups, discrimination, and state subsidy Corey Brettschneider; 4. Commentary on freedom of speech, equal citizenship, and the anti-caste principle: a commentary on regulating hate speech Bryan Fair; 5. Expanding the Bob Jones Compromise Caroline Mala Corbin; 6. Commentary on religious practice and sex discrimination: a case for toleration? Meredith Render; 7. Religious freedom and the nondiscrimination norm Richard W. Garnett; 8. Commentary on religious freedom and the nondiscrimination norm Paul Horwitz; 9. Freedom of religion or freedom of the church? Steven D. Smith; 10. Commentary on government for the time being William Brewbaker.

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