Human rights and their principles of interpretation are the leading legal paradigms of our time. Freedom of religion occupies a pivotal position in rights discourses, and the principles supporting its interpretation receive increasing attention from courts and legislative bodies. This book critically evaluates religious pluralism as an emerging legal principle arising from attempts to define the boundaries of freedom of religion. It examines religious pluralism as an underlying aspect of different human rights regimes and constitutional traditions. It is, however, the static and liberal shape religious pluralism has assumed that is taken up critically here. In order to address how difference is vulnerable to elimination, rather than recognition, the book takes up a contemporary ethics of alterity. More generally, and through its reconstruction of a more difference-friendly vision of religious pluralism, it tackles the problem of the role of rights in the era of diverse narratives of emancipation.
Introduction Part I: From Non-Confrontation to Obsession – Religious Pluralism as an Emerging Legal Principle in the European Legal Sphere 1. Council of Europe Bodies and Soft-Law Interpretations of Religious Pluralism 2. The European Court of Human Rights and and Judicial Interpretation of the Principle of Religious Pluralism 3. The Relevance of Religious Pluralism in the EU legal order 4. Relevance of pluralism in European domestic regimes Part II: Three Myths of Inclusion 5. On the Way to Elysium – Defining Religion and Registration of New Religious Communities 6. Regulation of Religious Symbols – a European Pandora’s Jar 7. Religions and Reproductive Rights – Freedom Changed to Stone? Part III: Religious Pluralism, Human Rights and the Dissident 8. The Hollow Paradigms of Contemporary Debates on Law and Religion and the Failed Potential of Religious Pluralism 9. Repairing Utopia of Rights - Sources of Reconstruction 10. Human rights and the dissident 11. Rights Beyond Structure? – Towards Otherwise than Becoming Conclusions