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Religious Convictions and Political Choice [Hardcover]

By Kent Greenawalt (Author)
Our Price $ 139.20  
Retail Value $ 145.00  
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Item Number 160366  
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Item Specifications...

Pages   278
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 8.59" Width: 5.78" Height: 0.98"
Weight:   1.04 lbs.
Binding  Hardcover
Release Date   Dec 10, 1987
Publisher   Oxford University Press
ISBN  0195049136  
EAN  9780195049138  

Availability  78 units.
Availability accurate as of Oct 28, 2016 10:27.
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Item Description...
How far may Americans properly rely on their religious beliefs when they make and defend political decisions? For example, are ordinary citizens or legislators doing something wrong when they consciously allow their decisions respecting abortion laws to be determined by their religious views? Despite its intense contemporary relevance, the full dimensions of this issue have until now not been thoroughly examined. Religious Convictions and Political Choice represents the first attempt to fill this gap. Beginning with an account of the basic premises of our liberal democracy, Greenawalt moves to a comparison between rational secular grounds of decision and grounds based on religious convictions. He discusses particular issues such as animal rights and abortion, showing how religious convictions can bear on an individual's decisions about them, and inquires whether reliance on such convictions is compatible with liberal democratic premises. In conclusion, he argues that citizens cannot be expected to rely exclusively on rational, secular grounds.

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More About Kent Greenawalt

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! Kent Greenawalt is University Professor at Columbia University, teaching in the law school, and a former Deputy Solicitor General of the United States. His books include "Does God Belong in Public Schools?" and "Fighting Words" (both Princeton), as well as "Conflicts of Law and Morality" and "Religious Convictions and Political Choice."

Kent Greenawalt currently resides in the state of New York. Kent Greenawalt was born in 1936 and has an academic affiliation as follows - Columbia University Columbia University Law School Columbia University.

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Reviews - What do our customers think?
Religious arguments can be used in public discourse  Jun 28, 2003
I've read this book a lont time ago. I very much appreciate Kent Greenawalt's scholarship. It deals with the question as to if religious arguments can be used as a means to justifying public policy or legislation in a secular and religiously pluralistic state. So far as I can remember, Kent Greenawalt attempts to defend a secular public square where religious arguments should have no place and individuals and groups must give rational and publicly accesible reasons when they debate matters of public interest. While I am in total agreement with Kent Greenawalt in his defense of an open public sphere of discourse in a State of free and equal citizens, I tend to think that religious arguments can indeed be put forward (v.g. racism is a sin; abortion is a sin; gay marriage is not forbbiden in the Bible) and even be used as a reason to democratically aprove legislation. In an open sphere of public discourse people should be free to use the arguments they consider as being fundamental to the debate in question. But this, if and only if the public sphere of discourse remains open as to allow the religious reasons put forward to be challenged and mocked as any other kind of political speech. Religious arguments can be persuasively as is the case of any other kind of argument in a democracy. Religious arguments, like all other kinds of arguments, have emotional and rational components that appeal to some people and not to others. Religious arguments can persuade people like any arguments. The ceaseless critical engagement that constitutes a true democracy can clearly make use of religious arguments. To exclude religious arguments from the public debate would be as mistaken and discriminatory, from a democratic perspective, as to exclude metaphysical naturalistic arguments, nationalistic arguments or ideological arguments.

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