dunnettreader + secularism   54

Robert A. Markus - Saeculum: History & Society in the Theology of St Augustine (1970, rev 2007) | Cambridge University Press
Significant intro to rev'd edition, included in downloaded frontmatter along with TOC and original Preface. -- In this book Professor Markus's main concern is with those aspects of Augustine's thought which help to answer questions about the purpose of human society, and particularly with his reflections on history, society and the Church. He relates Augustine's ideas to their contemporary context and to older traditions, and shows which aspects of his thought he absorbed from his intellectual environment. Augustine appears from this study as a thinker who rejected the 'sacralization' of the established order of society, and the implications of this for a theology of history are explored in the last chapter. -- Downloaded frontmatter, excerpt & index via Air to DBOX - added to Evernote
books  downloaded  intellectual_history  theology  philosophy_of_history  Late_Antiquity  Early_Christian  Augustine  human_nature  eschatology  social_order  Providence  teleology  religion-established  politics-and-religion  religious_culture  Roman_Empire  paganism  pluralism  secularism  Roman_religion  secularization  Papacy  ecclesiology 
september 2016 by dunnettreader
Akeel Bilgrami, ed. - Beyond the Secular West (2016) | Columbia University Press
What is the character of secularism in countries that were not pervaded by Christianity, such as China, India, and the nations of the Middle East? To what extent is the secular an imposition of colonial rule? How does secularism comport with local religious cultures in Africa, and how does it work with local forms of power and governance in Latin America? Has modern secularism evolved organically, or is it even necessary, and has it always meant progress? A vital extension of Charles Taylor's A Secular Age, in which he exhaustively chronicled the emergence of secularism in Latin Christendom, this anthology applies Taylor's findings to secularism's global migration. (...) What began as a modern reaction to—as well as a stubborn extension of—Latin Christendom has become a complex export shaped by the world's religious and political systems. Brilliantly alternating between intellectual and methodological approaches, this volume fosters a greater engagement with the phenomenon across disciplines.
Preface, by Akeel Bilgrami
1. Can Secularism Travel?, by Charles Taylor
2. The Sufi and the State, by Souleymane Bachir Diagne
3. The Individual and Collective Self-Liberation Model of Ustadh Mahmoud Mohamed Taha, by Abdullahi Ahmed An-Na'im
4. Creating Democratically Friendly Twin Tolerations Outside of Latin Christendom: Tunisia, by Alfred Stepan
5. Secularism and the Mexican Revolution, by Claudio Lomnitz
6. Is Confucianism Secular?, by Peter van der Veer
7. Disenchantment Deferred, by Sudipta Kaviraj
8. An Ancient Indian Secular Age?, by Rajeev Bhargava
9. Gandhi's Radicalism: An Interpretation, by Akeel Bilgrami
10. A Secular Age Outside Latin Christendom: Charles Taylor Responds
books  kindle-available  secularization  modernity  modernization  Islam  tolerance  liberalism  decolonization  secularism  universalism  MENA  Tunisia  Mexico  India  ancient_India  Gandhi  Sufis  Confucianism  connected_history  Taylor_Charles  Christianity  Christendom 
july 2016 by dunnettreader
Eric Nelson - “From Selden to Mendelssohn: Hebraism and Religious Freedom” (2013) | in Skinner & van Gelderen, Freedom and the Construction of Europe - CUP
Nelson E. “From Selden to Mendelssohn: Hebraism and Religious Freedom”. In: Quentin Skinner and Martin van Gelderen , eds., Freedom and the Construction of Europe: New Perspectives on Philosophical, Religious, and Political Controversies. Cambridge University Press ; 2013. - scan of chapter -- downloaded pdf to Note
books  chapter  political_philosophy  political_history  politics-and-religion  17thC  18thC  freedom_of_conscience  tolerance  secularism  secularization  Church-and-State  Erastianism  Hebrew_commonwealth  Selden  Mendelssohn  legal_history  legal_theory  constitutional_regime  downloaded 
may 2016 by dunnettreader
Sylvie Taussig - Déclin et progrès chez Blumenberg (2011) - Cairn.info
La question du sens de l’histoire est un leitmotiv de la pensée moderne. La cosmologie issue de la révolution copernicienne a remis en cause la vision chrétienne qui posait de la Parousie au terme de l’histoire. Que des philosophies de l’histoire totalisantes aient pris le relais constitue une part de la sécularisation. Hans Blumenberg affirme la dimension indépassable de l’historicité tout en s’opposant aux tentatives de conférer un sens global à cette condition d’historicité de l’existence. Les Temps modernes, débarrassée des interminables discussions sur le progrès ou le déclin, sont légitimes. La sécularisation est ce processus dans lequel les ruines de l’âge ancien hantent la pensée moderne et l’aveuglent sur les enjeux de sa nouveauté – la mise à nu de sa contingence existentielle et du rôle humanisant de la culture
evolution-as-model  declinism  evolution-social  Blumenberg  progress  anti-modernity  secularization  secularism  modernity  historicism  Counter-Enlightenment  politico-theology  article  modernity-emergence  Europe-Early_Modern  intellectual_history  philosophy_of_history 
february 2016 by dunnettreader
Céline Spector - Charles Taylor, philosophe de la culture (career review) - La Vie des idées - 8 avril 2014
Charles Taylor n’a cessé de critiquer l’individualisme des sociétés modernes. La politique de la reconnaissance qu’il prône entend respecter la singularité de chacun et son inscription dans une communauté morale ou politique – quitte à accorder une importance excessive aux convictions religieuses. -- downloaded pdf to Note
article  intellectual_history  20thC  21stC  Taylor_Charles  individualism  modernity  secularism  religious_belief  religious_culture  downloaded 
december 2015 by dunnettreader
Victoria Kahn - Job's Complaint in "Paradise Regained" (2009) | JSTOR - ELH
ELH, Vol. 76, No. 3 (Fall, 2009), pp. 625-660 - reading Milton’s commitment to separation of church and state, against a renewal of an integrated political theology, as also a message for the individual's relation with approaching the reading of scripture -- looks like a link between her work on Milton in Wayward Contracts and her vocal program against reading imperatives of a political theology back into secularization history -- downloaded pdf to Note
article  jstor  politics-and-religion  politics-and-literature  English_lit  17thC  Milton  Restoration  Church_of_England  religion-established  religious_culture  religious_belief  Bible-as-literature  Job  New_Testament  theodicy  justice  justification  Satan  political-theology  secularism  freedom_of_conscience  temptation  downloaded 
november 2015 by dunnettreader
Samuel Moyn - Religious freedom between truth and tactic « The Immanent Frame - March 2012
In the last issue of First Things, a self-described coalition of “Catholics and Evangelicals together” defends religious freedom. The coalition includes a number of notable Americans, like Charles Colson and George Weigel, with endorsements from the archbishops of Chicago, New York, and Philadelphia, along with many others. According to the statement, the situation is unexpectedly urgent. After the fall of the Soviet Union, “throughout the world, a new era of religious freedom seemed at hand.” But, now it is blatantly clear that the scourge of intolerance—especially secularist intolerance—persists. -- downloaded pdf to Note
US_politics  2010s  religious_culture  freedom_of_conscience  Catholics-and-politics  Evangelical  culture_wars  persecution  Vatican_II  Papacy  Protestants  Religious_Right  public_sphere  public_opinion  public_policy  Tocqueville  politics-and-religion  Christian_Right  Christianity  Christianity-Islam_conflict  secularism  liberalism-public_reason  liberalism  downloaded 
november 2015 by dunnettreader
Nitzan Lebovic - Introduction - to issue "Political Theology" (2008) | JSTOR - New German Critique
No. 105, Political Theology (Fall, 2008), pp. 1-6 -- Articles in issue -- György Geréby, Political Theology versus Theological Politics: Erik Peterson and Carl Schmitt (pp. 7-33) *--* Christiane Frey, χλη̑σις/Beruf: Luther, Weber, Agamben (pp. 35-56) *--* Astrid Deuber-Mankowsky and Catharine Diehl, The Image of Happiness We Harbor: The Messianic Power of Weakness in Cohen, Benjamin, and Paul (pp. 57-69) *-'* Samuel Moyn, Hannah Arendt on the Secular (pp. 71-96) *--* Nitzan Lebovic, The Jerusalem School: The Theopolitical Hour (pp. 97-120) *--* Arnd Wedemeyer, Herrschaftszeiten! Theopolitical Profanities in the Face of Secularization (pp. 121-141) *--* Benjamin Lazier, On the Origins of "Political Theology": Judaism and Heresy between the World Wars (pp. 143-164) -- Introduction downloaded to Note
article  journals-academic  jstor  intellectual_history  theology  political_philosophy  politics-and-religion  political-theology  Schmitt  Arendt  secularization  secularism  Luther  Weber  Judaism  entre_deux_guerres  Holocaust  downloaded  post-WWII  Cold_War  eschatology  Benjamin 
october 2015 by dunnettreader
Jay Tolson, Return of the Repressed - review of Michael Walzer, The Paradox of Liberation: Secular Revolutions and Religious Counterrevolutions | IASC: The Hedgehog Review - Volume 17, No. 2 (Summer 2015)
Yale University Press, 2015 -- The paradox explored in this short book, which grew out of the Henry L. Stimson lectures at Yale University, can be summed up in a single question: Why did so many states that gained independence in the post–World War II era and were founded on secular and democratic ideals soon face the powerful challenges of religious revivalism? Walzer’s inquiry into the inability of “the leaders and militants of secular liberation…to consolidate their achievements and reproduce themselves” focuses on three cases: Israel, where the secularist ideology of Labor Zionism now meets with powerful opposition from champions of a more messianic strain of Zionism as well as ultra-Orthodox Judaism; Algeria, where the secularist (and, briefly, democratic) ideals of the National Liberation Front have been repeatedly challenged and were nearly overturned by militant Islamists; and India, where the ambitious reform program of Jawaharlal Nehru’s Congress party has come up against the fervor and electoral successes of Hindu nationalists determined to assert their primacy within the constitutional order. -- behind paywall
books  kindle-available  reviews  paywall  political_history  20thC  post-colonial  nationalism  national_ID  national_origins  national_tale  politics-and-religion  secularism  secularization  democracy  democracy_deficit  political_participation  opposition  modernity  modernization_theory  images-political  Israel  Islamist_fundamentalists  Judaism  Algeria  India  Indian_religion  Hinduism  right-wing  civil_liberties  civil_society  civility-political  tolerance  majoritarian  constitutionalism  post-WWII  religion-fundamentalism  elite_culture  elites-self-destructive  populism 
july 2015 by dunnettreader
Emile Chabal - Jeremy Jennings, Revolution and the Republic. A History of Political Thought in France since the 18thC | Books & ideas - Dec 2012
.. the French themselves have rarely agreed on the meaning of politics, let alone the meaning of specific events such as the Revolution or the Commune. This means that, before we can even begin to approach the questiodn of what actually happened in French politics, we have to understand what people thought was happening. This is where Jennings’s vast 500-page book comes into its own. With his encyclopaedic knowledge, he is able to guide us through some of the most impassioned debates in modern French politics. This is not, strictly speaking, an essay; it does not have a clearly defined argument. Rather, it is an examination of the most important political thinkers in modern France brought together in ten thematic chapters.(..)[heavily influenced by recent French historians and political thinkers especially Rosanvallon but also traces of Furet and Claude Lefort -- their focus on the struggles over "indeterminate" representation -- heavy attention to 19thC figures, especially from 1st half gives the discussion 19thC liberal spin -- not really through today as advertised] The cursory treatment of the 20thC implies that the majority of key debates in French politics had, at the very least, been exhaustively addressed by 1918. Whatever came next – whether it was the Popular Front, Vichy, Gaullism or socialist rule in the 1980s – was little more than a rerun of older divisions and disagreements. The remarkably brief discussions of Aron or Foucault contrast sharply with the painstaking reconstructions of a whole host of 19thC figures. But why neglect 20thC political thought when it could have given further strength to an argument about the struggle to define a French political community? Even if one were to remain within the confines of the chapter headings -- treats Gaullism and Marxism as marginal -- can't write about postwar France without De Gaulle or neglect Empire where universalising ideologies confronted reality with feedbacks.
books  reviews  18thC  19thC  20thC  France  intellectual_history  political_philosophy  political_culture  politics-and-religion  liberalism-19thC  French_Revolution-impact  Tocqueville  Constant  de_Staël  Guizot  Michelet  historiography-19thC  Terror  violence  revolutions  representative_institutions  representation  democracy  republicanism  Catholics-and-politics  Papacy  secularism  Bonapartism  universalism  historiography-postWWII 
june 2015 by dunnettreader
Paul Stob, Review: John McGowan, Pragmatist Politics: Making the Case for Liberal Democracy (2012) | KB Journal - 2013
McGowan, John. Pragmatist Politics: Making the Case for Liberal Democracy. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2012. -- Paul Stob, Department of Communication Studies, Vanderbilt University -- John McGowan’s Pragmatist Politics draws upon the pragmatist tradition—primarily the work of William James, John Dewey, and Kenneth Burke—to formulate a liberal democratic politics for the twenty-first century. At least that’s the overt aim of the book. But what may stand out most to readers of KB Journal is how McGowan seems intent on crafting an attitude. In formulating a pragmatist politics, McGowan fails to explicate political programs and initiatives, he disregards the nuts and bolts of democratic negotiation, and he provides no real strategies for building grassroots coalitions. What he does—and what he does admirably—is present readers with a pragmatist attitude that will, he hopes, come to permeate public culture. -- Stob describes how McGowan links rhetoric and political philosophy, especially using Burke's "comic" frame as fitting a pragmatist approach to goals and public participation of liberal democracy -- downloaded page as pdf to Note
books  reviews  political_philosophy  liberalism  liberal_democracy  rhetoric-political  conversation  persuasion  Burke_Kenneth  Dewey  James_William  secularism  symbolic_interaction  symbols-political  symbols-religious  communication  community  individualism  civic_virtue  civic_humanism  downloaded 
april 2015 by dunnettreader
Fiona Ellis - God, Value, and Nature (October 2014) - Oxford University Press
** analysis of the familiar contrast between the 'natural' and the 'supernatural' domains ** Explores the idea of expanded nature and develops it in a direction that will accomodate theism. ** Examines the nature of expansive naturalism, drawing on ...Akeel Bilgrami, David Wiggins, and John McDowell ** extensive discussion of Levinas's claim that relating to value is both necessary and sufficient for relating to God **-** Many philosophers believe that God has been put to rest. Naturalism is the default position, and the naturalist can explain what needs to be explained without recourse to God. This book agrees that we should be naturalists, but it rejects the more prevalent scientific naturalism in favour of an 'expansive' naturalism inspired by David Wiggins and John McDowell. (..) expansive naturalism can accommodate the idea of God, (..) the expansive naturalist has unwittingly paved the way towards a form of naturalism which poses a genuine challenge to the atheist. (..) the traditional naturalism vs theism debate must be reconfigured: naturalism and theism (..) can both be true. Ellis draws on ... thinkers from theology and philosophy, ... between analytic and continental philosophy. (..) philosophical problems including the limits of nature and the status of value; theological problems surrounding the natural/supernatural relation, the Incarnation, and the concept of myth; and offers a model - inspired by the secular expansive naturalist's conception of philosophy - to comprehend the relation between philosophy and theology.
books  kindle-available  intellectual_history  philosophy_of_religion  philosophy_of_science  naturalism  natural_religion  theism  Deism  analytical_philosophy  McDowell  atheism  atheism-new  values  secularism  theology  Christology  supernatural  myth 
february 2015 by dunnettreader
Victoria Kahn - Stacking the deck: Thomas Pfau’s strange history of the West « The Immanent Frame - Oct 2014
Kahn continues her attack on anti-modernity readings of Renaissance, Reformation and Early Modern intellectual history to justify claims for the "necessity" of political theology, with emphasis on (Catholic Thomist) theology as the foundation and organizing thread. Pfau goes beyond the Schmitt readings of the illegitimacy of the post French Revolution secular political to deny post Ockham intellectual legitimacy to any theorist who follows Ockham's voluntarism -- while totally ignoring the social, political, cultural and religious changes. The result is a Hobbes as villain of the piece that conveniently ignores a century and a half of religious warfare. And as she notes, she neither recognizes herself in any of the roles in Pfau’s morality play, nor can she see where he even offers a place for contemporary secular women. Downloaded post as pdf to Note
books  reviews  kindle-available  intellectual_history  theology  modernity  self  Thomism  Thomism-21stC  voluntarism  Hobbes  secularism  political-theology  Reformation  Europe-Early_Modern  political_philosophy  religious_wars  religious_culture  religious_belief  downloaded  EF-add 
november 2014 by dunnettreader
Talal Asad - Historical notes on the idea of secular criticism « The Immanent Frame - Jan 2008
I have tried to underline the very different understandings people have had of it in Western history, understandings that can’t be reduced to the simple distinction between secular criticism (freedom and reason) and religious criticism (intolerance and obscurantism). The practice of secular criticism is now a sign of the modern, of the modern subject’s relentless pursuit of truth and freedom, of his or her political agency. It has almost become a duty, closely connected to the right to free expression and communication. But every critical discourse has institutional conditions that define what it is, what it recognizes, what it aims at, what it is destroying – and why. Neither philosophical nor literary criticism can successfully claim to be the privileged site of reason. It matters whether the criticism/critique in question is conducted in the form of parody and satire, confession of sins, political auto-critique, professional criticism, or speech under analysis. One might say that if these are all possible instances of critique/criticism, then what we have here is a family concept for which it is not possible to provide a single theory because the practices that constitute them differ radically. And yet there is, perhaps, something distinctive after all about the historical concept of “critique” that Foucault wanted to identify, something other than the varieties of critical practice to which I have pointed: In some areas of our modern life, there is the insistent demand that reasons be given for almost everything. The relation to knowledge, to action, and to other persons, that results when this demand is taken as the foundation of all understanding, is perhaps what Foucault had in mind when he spoke of critique. “The critical attitude” is the essence of secular heroism. -- downloaded page as pdf to Note
critique  intellectual_history  cultural_history  Europe-Early_Modern  science-and-religion  Scientific_Revolution  scientific_method  Popper  Kant  Foucault  secularism  secular_humanism  concepts-change  Koselleck  rhetoric  rhetoric-moral_basis  epistemology-social  scientific_culture  political_culture  authority  genealogy-method  individualism  agency  Enlightenment-ongoing  Bayle  scepticism  Republic_of_Letters  disciplines  downloaded  EF-add 
november 2014 by dunnettreader
The Power of Religion in the Public Sphere, eds. Eduardo Mendieta and Jonathan VanAntwerpen (2011) — Social Science Research Council - Publications
The Power of Religion in the Public Sphere (Columbia University Press, 2011) represents a rare opportunity to experience a diverse group of preeminent philosophers confronting one pervasive contemporary concern: what role does—or should—religion play in our public lives? Reflecting on her recent work concerning state violence in Israel-Palestine, Judith Butler explores the potential of religious perspectives for renewing cultural and political criticism, while Jürgen Habermas, best known for his seminal conception of the public sphere, thinks through the ambiguous legacy of the concept of “the political” in contemporary theory. Charles Taylor argues for a radical redefinition of secularism, and Cornel West defends civil disobedience and emancipatory theology. Eduardo Mendieta and Jonathan VanAntwerpen detail the immense contribution of these philosophers to contemporary social and political theory, and an afterword by Craig Calhoun places these attempts to reconceive the significance of both religion and the secular in the context of contemporary national and international politics. The essays comprising this volume include Habermas’s “The Political: The Rational Meaning of a Questionable Inheritance of Political Theology,” Taylor’s “Why We Need a Radical Redefinition of Secularism,” Butler’s “Is Judaism Zionism?” and West’s “Prophetic Religion and the Future of Capitalist Civilization.” Each chapter was originally presented as a talk at a recent symposium co-hosted by the SSRC, the Institute for Public Knowledge at New York University, and the Humanities Institute at SUNY Stony Brook. -- Excerpt from the afterword by Craig Calhoun downloaded pdf to Note -- the Taylor essay responded to at The Immanent Frame starting with Bigrami's paper
books  sociology_of_religion  political_philosophy  moral_philosophy  theology  social_theory  politics-and-religion  political_participation  secularism  public_sphere  IR  IR-domestic_po  litics  Judaism  diasporas  exiles  Habermas  Taylor_Charles  Butler_Judith  downloaded  EF-add 
november 2014 by dunnettreader
Regina Schwartz - Secularism, belief, and truth « The Immanent Frame - Oct 2011
Triggered by Bilgrami’s paper and Taylor's thoughts on respect of multicultural communities, becomes a meditation on the virtues of open, vigorous debate in endless truth-seeking stimulated by Milton. -- It is because that Truth of how best to live together is a mystery, not fully graspable, knowable, manipulable, after all, that we need to approach the dialogue with the other with full respect—to listen, learn, and evaluate. So I guess mystery turns out not to be so woosie for politics, after all. Another way to say this is that I agree with Taylor’s assessment that we are in an era of reflexivity regarding religion in which belief is always questionable and there are many different positions, that this is a good, the outcome of the Enlightenment and the romantic Counter-Enlightenment, and surely, we need that same reflexivity in our secular beliefs. -- downloaded page as pdf to Note
epistemology-social  religious_belief  multiculturalism  Taylor_Charles  secularism  free_speech  freedom_of_conscience  reflexivity  liberalism  Milton  downloaded  EF-add 
november 2014 by dunnettreader
Urbinati, Nadia - The context of religious pluralism « The Immanent Frame - 26 Jan. 2012
Akeel Bilgrami’s article, “Secularism: Its Content and Context,” is an important and welcome contribution .... Bilgrami clarifies in a penetrating and lucid way, three fundamental ideas on secularism: first, that it is “a stance to be taken about religion”; second, that it is not an indication of the form of government or the liberal nature of a regime; and third, that the context is a crucial factor in issues concerning the relationship between politics and religion. The first two arguments are intertwined and pertain to the identity and function of secularism, while the latter brings us directly to the role of religion in the public sphere (...) in what follows [I] is propose some specifications and exemplifications that may enrich or complete [Bigrami's analysis]. -- In matters that have a direct impact on the individual freedom of religion and social peace such as the presence of religion in the public sphere, political theorists should pay close attention to the ethical context and the historical tradition of a given society without deducing practical conclusions from an ideal conception of democracy and liberalism. This pragmatic suggestion of going back and forth from the ideal norm to the context is an admission of the fact that a political practice that is liberal in a pluralistic religious environment may turn to be anti-liberal in a mono-religious society. Pluralism is the essential condition within which we should situate the discourse of the role of religions in the public sphere and the issue of secularism. Without pluralism (as a social fact or as an actual plurality of religions, not only a formal declaration of rights) a constitutional democracy has a weaker liberal nature and may generate decisions that are not more liberal or tolerant than those made in a non-constitutional democracy (or in a decent illiberal society, to paraphrase Rawls). -- example of "liberal public square" in a mono-religious society Catholic Thomist positions advocated in Italian artificial insemination debates producing very restrictive legislation of majority religion restricting rights of minority
21stC  political_philosophy  democracy  liberalism  secularism  public_sphere  Rawls  Habermas  sovereignty  sociology_of_religion  politics-and-religion  civil_liberties  minorities  majoritarian  Italy  Catholics  Catholics-and-politics  Thomism-21stC  reproductive_rights  women-rights  democratic_theory  democratization  EF-add 
october 2014 by dunnettreader
Andrew Koppelman - Naked Strong Evaluation - Dissent, p. 105, Winter 2009 :: SSRN
Andrew Koppelman -Northwestern University School of Law -- Northwestern Public Law Research Paper No. 14-49 -- A review, for Dissent magazine, of Charles Taylor’s book, A Secular Age. - Number of Pages in PDF File: 6 - Keywords: Charles Taylor, Religion, Secularism -- downloaded pdf to Note
books  reviews  Taylor_Charles  historical_sociology  sociology_of_religion  cultural_history  intellectual_history  secularism  secularization  Reformation  Counter-Reformation  Protestants  Enlightenment  Enlightenment_Project  downloaded  EF-add 
september 2014 by dunnettreader
Ian Ward, review - Charles Taylor, A Secular Age | JSTOR: The Journal of Religion, Vol. 88, No. 3 (July 2008), pp. 420-422
Certain aspects of A Secular Age are bound to generate controversy, particularly among scholars trained in the study of religion. Those suspicious of the category of religious “experience,” given the ahistorical and covertly apologetic uses to which it has been put in the past, will be wary of Taylor’s idea of a “sense of fullness,” which draws upon the earlier work of Mircea Eliade, Rudolf Otto, and William James. --Most importantly, there is also the issue of where to place A Secular Age—who is Taylor arguing against and engaging in dialogue with? What are the relevant competitor views upon which we should bring it to bear? Given its size and complexity, one of the most obvious competitor accounts of secularity and modernity would be Hans Blumenberg’s The Legitimacy of the Modern Age, but Taylor’s explicit references to Blumenberg, while suggestive, are infrequent and parenthetical. Taylor does, more explicitly, situate his account against what he calls “subtraction” theories of secularity, which posit a “uniform and unilinear effect of modernity on religious belief and practice” (461). However, given that prominent scholars of secularization (such as Peter Berger and Jürgen Habermas) do not defend such a position, we might ask whether Taylor’s scholarly target remains a live one. -- didn't download
books  reviews  kindle-available  jstor  religious_history  cultural_history  secularization  secularism  religious_belief  religious_culture  religious_experience  sociology_of_religion  modernity  Blumenberg  Enlightenment  progress  Providence  Taylor_Charles 
august 2014 by dunnettreader
Review Essay: Legal Thought in Enlightenment's Wake by Jeffrey A. Pojanowski :: SSRN - 4 Jurisprudence, 2013, Forthcoming
Notre Dame Legal Studies Paper No. 12-80 -- This review essay considers Steven D. Smith’s most recent book, The Disenchantment of Secular Discourse. Rather than focusing on the book’s argument about the practices and pathologies of the public square, this essay uses Smith’s chapter on scientific thought as a platform for exploring connections between Disenchantment and Smith’s prior work in legal theory. The catalyst for these reflections is Scandinavian legal realism. Considering these elements together sheds light on both the limits and virtues of central ideas about legal obligation and authority in contemporary jurisprudence. Such perspective points to a broader argument that jurisprudential debates about methodology and concepts may be as much about how we read the universe as they are about how we understand law. -- Keywords: jurisprudence, legal theory, obligation, authority, conceptual analysis, legal positivism
books  reviews  philosophy_of_law  political_philosophy  moral_philosophy  obligation  secularism  secularization  legal_realism  authority  legal_theory  analytical_philosophy  concepts  legal_culture  positivism-legal  downloaded  EF-add 
july 2014 by dunnettreader
Steven D. Smith, review essay - Discourse in the Dusk: The Twilight of Religious Freedom? | JSTOR: Harvard Law Review, Vol. 122, No. 7 (May, 2009), pp. 1869-1907
Reviewed work(s): Religion and the Constitution — Volume 2: Establishment and Fairness by Kent Greenawalt -- Smith claims a millennium of tradition re church and state is unraveling (a la MacIntyre decadent tradition) and US policy and jurisprudence tends to ignore erosion of their fundamental justifications -- starts with Pope Gregory and Henry IV and investiture controversy -- downloaded pdf to Note
books  reviews  article  jstor  intellectual_history  political_philosophy  theology  religion-established  religious_culture  religious_history  church_history  civil_liberties  freedom_of_conscience  tolerance  pluralism  secularism  US_constitution  bill_of_rights  legal_theory  philosophy_of_law  medieval_history  Papacy  Reformation  downloaded  EF-add 
july 2014 by dunnettreader
"SECULARIZATION, LEGAL INDETERMINACY, AND HABERMAS'S DISCOURSE THEORY O" by Mark C. Modak-Truran
Mark C. Modak-Truran, Mississippi College School of Law -- The unexpected vitality of religion has motivated scholars in many fields like anthropology, sociology, political science, international relations, and philosophy to revisit their assumptions about the supposed secularization of their disciplines. The secularization of law arguably constitutes the most widely-held but least-examined assumption in contemporary legal theory. Legal scholars and philosophers have surprisingly ignored one exception—Jürgen Habermas’s discourse theory of law. Relying on Max Weber's social theory, Habermas argues that the rationalization of society (i.e., secularization) has eliminated religious and metaphysical justifications for law and has differentiated law from politics and morality so that law must be legitimated in a seemingly paradoxical manner: by its legality. Habermas claims that legality can legitimate the law based on the discourse principle in the discourse of justification by voluntary, intersubjective agreement among all those affected and that the law can be impartially applied in the discourse of application via the principle of appropriateness without judges relying on personal moral, political, or religious convictions. At the same time, Habermas recognizes that the law is indeterminate so that strong legal formalism no longer maintains the secularization of law. The failure of Habermas’s discourse theory of law represents a watershed moment for contemporary legal theory. Contemporary legal theory needs to comprehend that the widespread acceptance of legal indeterminacy calls into question current conceptions of the secularization of law and arguably demarcates the desecularization of the law. -- Mark C. Modak-Truran. "SECULARIZATION, LEGAL INDETERMINACY, AND HABERMAS'S DISCOURSE THEORY OF LAW" 35 Fla. St. U. L. Rev. 73 (2007). -- downloaded pdf to Note
philosophy_of_law  political_philosophy  social_theory  legitimacy  foundationalism  legal_indeterminancy  legal_theory  discourse-political_theory  discourse_ethics  Habermas  secularism  post-secular  downloaded  EF-add 
july 2014 by dunnettreader
"BEYOND THEOCRACY AND SECULARISM (PART I): TOWARD A NEW PARADIGM FOR LA" by Mark C. Modak-Truran
To move beyond theocracy (pre-modern) and secularism (modern), this article closes by identifying the trajectory for a new constructive postmodern paradigm that embraces legal indeterminacy and secularizing the text of the law but argues that a plurality of religious convictions implicitly legitimates and thereby desecularizes the law. Desecularizing the law does not result in the imposition of the religion of the ruler (theocracy) in a pluralistic democratic society. Rather, the constructive postmodern paradigm of law and religion allows for the religious pluralism in society to provide a plurality of religious ontologies that implicitly legitimate the law and close the ontological gap between legal theory and legal practice. -- Mark C. Modak-Truran. "BEYOND THEOCRACY AND SECULARISM (PART I): TOWARD A NEW PARADIGM FOR LAW AND RELIGION" Mississippi College Law Review 27.1 (2008): 159-233. -- downloaded pdf to Note
philosophy_of_law  ontology  ontology-social  social_theory  foundationalism  moral_philosophy  secularism  secular_humanism  post-secular  postmodern  legal_indeterminancy  values  pluralism  legal_theory  legal_culture  political-theology  politics-and-religion  downloaded  EF-add 
july 2014 by dunnettreader
"LEGITIMATION" by Mark C. Modak-Truran
Mark C. Modak-Truran, Mississippi College School of Law -- This article identifies 3 conceptions of legitimation - pre-modern, modern, and post-secular - -- Pre-modern conceptions of legitimation consider governments and rulers legitimate if they are ordained by God or if the political system is ordered in accordance with the normative cosmic order. Contemporary proponents of the pre-modern conception range from those in the US who maintain that the government has been legitimated by the “Judeo-Christian tradition” to those in predominantly Muslim countries like Iran that have constitutional theocracies. -- the prevailing modern conception of legitimation in constitutional democracies stems from the “consent of the governed,” which includes 2 principles of legitimation - democracy (or popular sovereignty) and constitutionalism (or the rule of law). The critical challenges to these principles include the internal challenges of identity politics and religious fundamentalism and the external challenge of globalization. The dramatic return of religion and the surprising rise of political theology are two prominent developments supporting a shift to a post-secular conception of legitimation and a new post-secular social imaginary. -- Mark C. Modak-Truran. "LEGITIMATION" Encyclopedia of Political Thought. Ed. Michael T. Gibbons, Diana Coole, & Kennan Ferguson. Wiley-Blackwell, 2014. -- downloaded pdf to Note
political_philosophy  legitimacy  authority  divine_right  divine_command  democracy  constitutionalism  consent  social_contract  rule_of_law  post-secular  modernity  secularization  secularism  constitutional_law  government-forms  accountability  downloaded  EF-add 
july 2014 by dunnettreader
Jeremy Waldron - The Image of God: Rights, Reason, and Order (2010) :: SSRN
NYU School of Law, Public Law Research Paper No. 10-85 -- The idea that humans are created in the image of God is often cited as a foundation for human rights theory. In this paper, this use of imago dei is surveyed, and while the paper is basically favorable to this foundation, it draws attention to some difficulties (both theological and practical) that using imago dei as a foundation for human rights may involve. Also it explores the suggestion that the image of God idea may be more apt as a foundation for some rights rather than others. Its use in relation to political rights is specifically explored. The moral of the discussion is that foundations do make a difference. We should not expect that, if we simply nail this idea onto the underside of a body of human rights theory as a foundation, everything in the theory will remain as it is. -- Number of Pages in PDF File: 21 -- Keywords: death penalty, foundationalism, human rights, image of God, political liberalism, political rights, religion, rights, secularism
paper  SSRN  philosophy_of_law  political_philosophy  moral_philosophy  imago_dei  foundationalism  human_rights  liberalism  rights-political  secularism  humanism  natural_rights  universalism  morality-Christian  morality-divine_command  EF-add 
july 2014 by dunnettreader
Jonathan Israel - “Radical Enlightenment” – Peripheral, Substantial, or the Main Face of the Trans-Atlantic Enlightenment (1650-1850) | Diametros
“Radical Enlightenment” and “moderate Enlightenment” are general categories which, it has become evident in recent decades, are unavoidable and essential for any valid discussion of the Enlightenment broadly conceived (1650-1850) and of the revolutionary era (1775-1848). Any discussion of the Enlightenment or revolutions that does not revolve around these general categories, first introduced in Germany in the 1920s and taken up in the United States since the 1970s, cannot have any validity or depth either historically or philosophically. “Radical Enlightenment” was neither peripheral to the Enlightenment as a whole, nor dominant, but rather the “other side of the coin” an inherent and absolute opposite, always present and always basic to the Enlightenment as a whole. Several different constructions of “Radical Enlightenment” have been proposed by the main innovators on the topic – Leo Strauss, Henry May, Günter Mühlpfordt, Margaret Jacob, Gianni Paganini, Martin Mulsow, and Jonathan Israel – but, it is argued here, the most essential element in the definition is the coupling, or linkage, of philosophical rejection of religious authority (and secularism - the elimination of theology from law, institutions, education and public affairs) with theoretical advocacy of democracy and basic human rights. -- Keywords - Enlightenment Radical Enlightenment moderate Enlightenment democracy aristocracy universal education equality emancipation republicanism mixed government poverty economic oppression crypto-radicalism positivism American revolution -- downloaded pdf to Note
article  intellectual_history  political_history  political_culture  politics-and-religion  historiography  economic_history  political_economy  17thC  18thC  19thC  Enlightenment  Radical_Enlightenment  French_Enlightenment  religious_culture  authority  anticlerical  Absolutism  secularism  democracy  natural_rights  civil_liberties  egalitarian  American_Revolution  French_Revolution  1848_revolutions  Spinozism  education  aristocracy  poverty  Ancien_régime  mixed_government  tolerance  positivism  natural_law  domination  republicanism  republics-Ancient_v_Modern  natural_philosophy  British_history  Dutch  Germany  Atlantic  American_colonies  Early_Republic  Republic_of_Letters  bibliography  downloaded  EF-add 
july 2014 by dunnettreader
Stéphane Courtois, review essay - Jürgen Habermas, Entre naturalisme et religion. Les défis de la démocratie - Philosophiques v36 n1 2009, p. 265-269 | Érudit 
English translation - Between Naturalism and Religion, Polity Press (2008) -- Stéphane Courtois - Université du Québec à Trois-Rivières --- Naturalisme et religion est la traduction française de Zwischen Naturalismus und Religion. Philosophische Aufsätze, paru chez Suhrkamp en 2005. Il s’agit d’un recueil d’essais rédigés par Habermas à diverses occasions et qui ne forment pas un tout systématique, bien qu’ils soient animés par une intention commune dont je discuterai plus loin. Qu’il me soit permis, avant de discuter plus avant de la teneur de l’ouvrage, de faire quelques brèves remarques sur l’édition française. Comme c’est souvent leur habitude, les éditeurs français se sont permis quelques libertés par rapport à l’ouvrage d’origine -- chose que l’on n’observe pas, par exemple, du côté anglophone où Between Naturalism and Religion, paru chez Polity Press en 2008, respecte scrupuleusement l’édition originale. Des onze essais qui la composent, les éditeurs français ont choisi de n’en conserver que sept, auxquels ils ont joint un court essai de Habermas, « Une conscience de ce qui manque », originellement paru dans un ouvrage du même titre
books  reviews  Habermas  political_philosophy  political_culture  religious_culture  culture_wars  secularism  civil_liberties  civil_society  moral_philosophy  public_sphere  Kant  Enlightenment_Project  Adorno  scientism  multiculturalism 
june 2014 by dunnettreader
Thomas D. Wilson - The Oglethorpe Plan: Enlightenment Design in Savannah and Beyond: (2012) | Amazon.com: Books
The statesman and reformer James Oglethorpe was a significant figure in the philosophical and political landscape of 18thC British America. His social contributions—all informed by Enlightenment ideals—included prison reform, the founding of the Georgia colony on behalf of the "worthy poor," and stirring the founders of the abolitionist movement. He also developed the famous ward design for the city of Savannah, a design that became one of the most important planning innovations in American history. Multilayered and connecting the urban core to peripheral garden and farm lots, the Oglethorpe Plan was intended by its author to both exhibit and foster his utopian ideas of agrarian equality. The professional planner Thomas D. Wilson reconsiders the Oglethorpe Plan, revealing that Oglethorpe was a more dynamic force in urban planning than has generally been supposed -- the Oglethorpe Plan embodies all of the major themes of the Enlightenment, including science, humanism, and secularism. The vibrancy of the ideas behind its conception invites an exploration of the plan's enduring qualities. In addition to surveying historical context and intellectual origins, this book aims to rescue Oglethorpe’s work from its relegation to the status of a living museum in a revered historic district, and to demonstrate instead potential links with New Urbanism and other more naturally evolving and socially engaged modes of urban development. -- only hdbk
books  18thC  British_history  Atlantic  American_colonies  Georgia  Enlightenment  cultural_history  social_history  intellectual_history  egalitarian  civic_humanism  civic_virtue  slavery  abolition  poverty  Poor_Laws  debtors  agriculture  urban_development  urbanization  prisons  improvement  secularism  republicanism  farmers  EF-add 
june 2014 by dunnettreader
Dale Van Kley, review essay, Where the Rot Started? - Brad S. Gregory, The Unintended Reformation: How a Religious Revolution Secularized Society - | Books and Culture
Excellent essay -- Gregory places almost all blame on the Protestants for the disunity of Christendom, marginalization of religious institutions and thought, and horrors of modern age, including moral relativism and global warming. Like Gillespie, puzzling stress on Dun Scotus ("univocal being") and William of Ockham (nominalism) for (enabling? producing?) a cosmos in which scientific inquiry could dispense with God. Gregory omits a number of factors on the Catholic side (beyond the Lutheran Reformation itself that the Papacy might have handled via reforms instead of confrontation and denial of fallibility). Van Kley's list of factors (especially French) that Gregory omits -- (1) splits in Catholicism throughout middle ages, e.g. frequent appearance of latent heresies if reformers couldn't get a new order founded; (2) Papal alliance with secular rulers to stamp out conciliar movement and reinforce papal infallibility - made compromise with Luther etc impossible and still inhibits any meaningful ecumenism; (3) Counter-Reformation shift from assessing theological grounds of specific doctrines to asserting absolute unchallengable authority based on external marks (as defined by Catholics) of the true church - a style of argument that wasn't going to survive sola scriptura, new science, Enlightenment etc; (4) Papal overreaction that stamped out Gallican and liberal Catholicism, which in turn stimulated anticlericalism and anti-regime sentiments from both left and right, thereby reducing the flexibility of the Ancien Regime to address social and economic problems or reform institutions; (5) a counter-revolutionary anti-intellectual unholy alliance between Papacy and Jansénistes that produced the uncompromising radicalism of laïcité. And that's not all Van Kley covers.
books  reviews  kindle-available  historiography  religious_history  church_history  intellectual_history  theology  ecclesiology  Christianity  Reformation  16thC  17thC  18thC  19thC  20thC  21stC  Catholics  Papacy  Protestants  modernity  relativism  science-and-religion  Scientific_Revolution  Enlightenment  French_Enlightenment  Jansenists  Counter-Enlightenment  Counter-Reformation  counter-revolution  politics-and-religion  secularization  secularism  heterodoxy  heresy  Gallican  Absolutism  liberalism  self  morality-divine_command  morality-Christian  natural_law  nominalism  Duns_Scotus  medieval_philosophy  EF-add 
june 2014 by dunnettreader
Lincoln Mullen - Religion in American History: Where Are the Histories of American Irreligion?
Very good historiography post (or more about lack thereof) -- one of the comments has a great bibliography, not just for American history but also people working on Britain and Europe
religious_history  religious_culture  politics-and-religion  religious_belief  18thC  19thC  20thC  US_history  American_colonies  Early_Republic  atheism  atheism_panic  Deism  rational_religion  free-thinkers  secular_humanism  secularism  anti-Trinitarian  bibliography  EF-add 
june 2014 by dunnettreader
William H. Swatos, Jr. and Kevin J. Christiano - Secularization Theory: The Course of a Concept | JSTOR: Sociology of Religion, Vol. 60, No. 3 (Autumn, 1999), pp. 209-228
This essay provides an introduction to the secularization debate as it presents itself at the end of the 1990s. After a conceptual survey from the mid-1960s to the present, we focus on the empirical and historical elements that undergird both the claims of secularization theory and those of its principal critics. Secularization theory is placed in relationship both to the Religion of Reason of the Enlightenment and developments in European religious historiography during the nineteenth century. The underlying conflict to be resolved with respect to "secularization" is whether the term can be used in a relatively value-neutral analytic way or whether it inherently carries unsubstantiated value presuppositions. -- didn't download
article  jstor  sociology_of_religion  lit_survey  religious_history  religious_culture  religious_belief  secularization  secularism  ritual  sacred  church_history  EF-add 
january 2014 by dunnettreader
Jakob De Roover and S. N. Balagangadhara - John Locke, Christian Liberty, and the Predicament of Liberal Toleration | JSTOR: Political Theory, Vol. 36, No. 4 (Aug., 2008), pp. 523-549
Recently, scholars have disputed whether Locke's political theory should be read as the groundwork of secular liberalism or as a Protestant political theology. Focusing on Locke's mature theory of toleration, the article raises a central question: What if these two readings are compatible? That is, what would be the consequences if Locke's political philosophy has theological foundations, but has also given shape to secular liberalism? Examining Locke's theory in the "Letter Concerning Toleration" (1689), the article argues that this is indeed the case. The liberal model of toleration is a secularization of the theology of Christian liberty and its division of society into a temporal political kingdom and the spiritual kingdom of Christ. Therefore, when liberal toleration travels beyond the boundaries of the Christian West or when western societies become multicultural, it threatens to lose its intelligibility. -- helpful bibliography on recent debates -- downloaded pdf to Note
article  jstor  intellectual_history  political_philosophy  tolerance  17thC  Locke  multiculturalism  theology  secularism  bibliography  downloaded  EF-add 
january 2014 by dunnettreader
William Rasch - Enlightenment as Religion | JSTOR: New German Critique, No. 108 (Fall, 2009), pp. 109-131
Recent polemical and philosophical claims about modern, secular, liberal, enlightened Europe are examined from the perspective of Europe's relation, past and present, to the non-European world. The notion that Enlightenment reason and liberal institutions represent a higher level of culture because they serve as a universal, neutral medium in contrast to particular religious or ideological worldviews and most especially religious “fundamentalism” is questioned through a discussion of texts by Günter Grass, Jürgen Habermas, Martti Koskenniemi, Carl Schmitt, and Tzvetan Todorov. The legitimacy of Europe's identity as enlightened, secular, and liberal is not denied, only its self-understanding that with Enlightenment (implicitly regarded as the final stage of history) come universality and neutrality. Such a self-understanding contributes to the political problems that rational, “neutral” discourse is meant to solve. -- paywall Duke Journals
article  jstor  paywall  Enlightenment-ongoing  liberalism  secularism  Europe  Western_civ  culture  ideology  clash_of_civilizations  religion-fundamentalism  EF-add 
january 2014 by dunnettreader
The God Debates | A 21st Century Guide for Atheists and Believers
Shook presents a comprehensive, non-technical survey of the quest for knowledge of God. Using current ideas and concepts such as modernism, postmodernism, fideism, evidentialism, presuppositionalism, and mysticism, Shook ushers the importance of theological debates into a present-day context, steering clear of outdated caricatures of religion.

By mastering the clear and concise strategies Shook presents in each chapter, readers of all levels can participate in a thoughtful debate, grounded in knowledge of key arguments for and against the existence of God. Shook helps nonbelievers learn important theological standpoints while also acknowledging the shortcomings of some faith-based arguments. A final chapter considers the possibility of harmonizing reason and faith in light of several current worldviews, including fundamentalism and secularism.
books  God-existence  theology  atheism  science-and-religion  secularism  humanism  EF-add 
january 2014 by dunnettreader
Kenan Malik - A BOOK IN PROGRESS [PART 18]: ALISDAIR MACINTYRE, ENLIGHTENMENT AND TRADITION | Pandaemonium August 2012
Abelard’s real renown was as the most brilliant philosopher and theologian of his age. His work was, however, highly controversial because it challenged orthodox opinion, particularly about the Trinity, which Abelard tried to derive through reason. Twice he was condemned for heresy, and twice he meekly accepted his condemnation. MacIntyre approves of both the condemnation and of Abelard’s submission to authority. Abelard and his principal accuser, the Cistercian abbot Bernard of Clairvaux, both agreed, MacIntyre suggests, ‘that the integrity of the life of enquiry requires such interventions by authority’. Abelard, like all heretics, had been driven by ‘pride of will’. Heresy, MacIntyre writes, ‘is always a sign of pride in choosing to elevate one’s own judgment above that of genuine authority’. What defines a tradition, and hence moral truth, is not just reason or dialogue or debate but ‘genuine authority’. The ‘open-endedness’ of MacIntyre’s traditions is clearly strictly circumscribed.

It was precisely the claim that truth could be defined by authority that philosophers began to challenge from the sixteenth century on, and that came to define the Enlightenment, a challenge without which, as Jonathan Israel observes, modern ideas of ‘universality, equality and democracy’ could not have emerged. In defending the authority of premodern traditions against the Enlightenment idea of autonomy, MacIntyre may be taking a stance against the subjectivity of moral claims that he so despises. But the question he never properly addresses is how those modern moral ideas with which he has great sympathy would ever have evolved at all had the authority of those premodern traditions not been challenged in the first place.
books  bookshelf  moral_philosophy  Catholics  Papacy  Aquinas  authority  tradition  Burke  Enlightenment  liberalism  secularism  virtue_ethics  EF-add 
december 2013 by dunnettreader
Kenan Malik - BEYOND THE SACRED | Pandaemonium January 2012
Blasphemy, and the sacred, in other words, are not simply about theology and religion, but also about politics and power. We can see the way that blasphemy and the sacred have helped speak to social and political power if we look at the history of blasphemy in Britain.
British_history  17thC  20thC  legal_history  religious_history  Christianity  Church_of_England  secularism  cosmopolitanism  multiculturalism  EF-add 
december 2013 by dunnettreader
Thomas Pfau - History without hermeneutics: Brad Gregory’s unintended modernity « The Immanent Frame Nov 2013
It is precisely in the material practices of religious communities that we witness a hermeneutic of what a “sacramental worldview” concretely meant, something of far greater reality and presence than can be captured by any body of theological propositions. Invariably, though, the gravitational pull of The Unintended Reformation is away from social and material historiography and toward philosophical theology, which itself, in the two centuries leading up to the Reformation, becomes a far more fragmented enterprise than Gregory acknowledges.

Instead, the emergence of univocal forms of theological predication—a line of argument lately revived in stridently absolutist terms by the “Nottingham School” (particularly by John Milbank and Catherine Pickstock)—seems to receive disproportionate emphasis. In passing, one should also note that Richard Cross (incidentally a colleague of Brad Gregory at Notre Dame) has seriously challenged the allegedly pivotal impact of Duns Scotus’ univocalism on the genesis of modern thought. To be sure, somewhere in late Scholasticism—and here I would think, above all, of Ockham, Gabriel Biel, and Nicolas Autrecourt—we do, indeed, observe a momentous shift, whereby God is placed on the same ontological plane as all created, particular existence, and where a quasi-legalistic theological concern with divine omnipotence (potentia absoluta) trumps, and implicitly jeopardizes, the rational order (potentia ordinata) wrought by God. The impression is that of a conspicuous failure on the part of late Scholastic theologians to imagine and embrace God’s absolute transcendence as post-Nicaean Patristic thinkers all the way up to Anselm and Aquinas had been able to do.

Yet even if one were to restrict one’s understanding of medieval Christianity to its theological and philosophical superstructure, a book pursuing aims as ambitious as those of The Unintended Reformation owes its readers a more fully realized account of how, specifically, this momentous conceptual shift came about.
books  kindle-available  reviews  intellectual_history  religious_history  theology  metaphysics  nominalism  medieval_history  Renaissance  scholastics  Reformation  modernity  secularism  liberalism  EF-add 
november 2013 by dunnettreader
Peter E. Gordon - The Unintended Reformation (review series): Has modernity failed? « The Immanent Frame Sept 2013
[Brad Gregory's] His real concern, on my reading, is that modernity cannot survive if it refuses the meta-ethical ideal that once served as the organizing principle for medieval Christianity. But what philosophical or historical arguments could convince us that this ideal was special? And why should we not continue to believe that our own modern ideals only need to be realized with greater fidelity? Here we confront a certain asymmetry in the way Gregory writes about the various “failures” of distinctive ethical schemes: He seems to think that the modern alternatives have all failed because of their intrinsic defects, whereas the Christian ideal failed only because we failed to measure up to its demands. In the one case the failure points to a basic flaw in the metaphysical scheme itself; in the other case the failure was merely one of execution.
books  kindle-available  reviews  intellectual_history  religious_history  Medieval  Christianity  Catholics  Reformation  modernity  secularism  liberalism  metaphysics  moral_philosophy  EF-add 
november 2013 by dunnettreader
Reviews [series] of Brad Gregory, The Unintended Reformation « The Immanent Frame
Brad S. Gregory’s The Unintended Reformation traces the absence of any substantive common good—and the triumph of capitalism, consumerism, and individualism—to the long-term effects of the Protestant Reformation. Yet can the social and political ills of modern societies be understood as more or less direct, if unforeseeable, consequences of the Reformation? What is the contemporary import of thinking of modernity as the degradation of an earlier, more wholesome age? What sort of philosophical or theological premises underlie Gregory’s understanding of history, and how are political and socioeconomic factors to be incorporated into his account of modernization? We have invited scholars to respond to these and other questions, to evaluate Gregory’s thesis, and to offer their critiques of how his work might fit into broader historical patterns of interpreting the relationship of modernity to its past.

Series started with Clapper, September 2013. As of Pabst (Sept 24) all reactions have ranged from impressed with the scope of the intellectual history to attacking Gregory’s history as tenditious by omissions if not commissions, and for Gregory’s agenda (legitimating religious providentialism or metaphysics in historiographical evidence? or reimposing Catholicism (which? ) as politically and culturally authoritative? or just another anti modernity cri de coeur?) the reactions range from politely unenthusiastic to aggressively hostile.

Secular supercessionism and alternative modernity -Adrian Pabst

Get over it - Victoria Kahn

Has modernity failed? - Peter E. Gordon

The return of sacred history - Ian Hunter

An intended absence? Democracy and The Unintended Reformation - James Chappe
books  reviews  kindle-available  religious_history  intellectual_history  medieval_history  Renaissance  Reformation  Counter-Reformation  Enlightenment  Counter-Enlightenment  democracy  modernity  Aquinas  nominalism  secularism  modernization  common_good  pluralism  relativism  EF-add 
october 2013 by dunnettreader
The state of religion in China [series] « The Immanent Frame
Series of posts - starts October 2013

October 1st, 2013
Opiate of the masses with Chinese characteristics
posted by Thomas DuBois

October 4th, 2013
The Communist Party and the future of religion in China
posted by André Laliberté

October 8th, 2013
The “good” and the “bad” Muslims of China
posted by Yuting Wang

October 10th, 2013
Secular belief, religious belonging
posted by Richard Madsen
China  religious_history  religious_culture  politics-and-religion  Islam  Buddhism  Confuscianism  Christianity  securitization  secularism  modernization  Communist_Party  sociology_of_religion  community  identity  EF-add 
october 2013 by dunnettreader
Ian Hunter, review: The return of sacred history - Brad Gregory’s "The Unintended Reformation" « The Immanent Frame
Finally, let us return to the twin claims on which Gregory’s account is based: first, his claim that Protestant anti-sacramentalism facilitated a historical process by which “metaphysical univocity in combination with Occam’s razor opened a path that would lead through deism to Weberian disenchantment and modern atheism”; and, second, his claim that despite the “Western hyperpluralism” to which it gave rise, he can provide a true account of this history on the basis of a concept of a “transcendent creator God” whose compatibility with “all possible scientific findings” is grounded in a metaphysics that demonstrates God’s immanent presence in all scientific domains. How should we view these claims in light of the preceding evidences and observations? Well, the prima facie incompatibility between Gregory’s first claim and an array of significant historical evidence—taken in tandem with his relegation of anti-anachronist historiography altogether—suggests that his account should not be regarded as a contribution to trans-confessional historiography. Rather, it should be located, like Charles Taylor’s A Secular Age, in the genre of Catholic confessional metaphysical hermeneutics, where historical narratives are composed as unfoldings of predetermined metaphysical or theological doctrines.
books  reviews  religious_history  intellectual_history  cultural_history  Catholics  theology  metaphysics  Reformation  science-and-religion  Spinoza  monism  Deism  atheism  Hegelian  securitization  secularism  modernity  apostolic_succession  Thomism  historiography  historians-and-religion  church_history  history_of_science  Europe-Early_Modern  Germany  Biblical_criticism  philology  historicism  historiography-17thC  humanism  Duns_Scotus  God-attributes  transcendence  immanence  creation_ex_nilho  Early_Christian  Neoplatonism  Dioysius-Pseudo  forgeries  sacraments 
september 2013 by dunnettreader
James Chappel review of Brad Gregory’s The Unintended Reformation - An intended absence? Democracy and The Unintended Reformation « The Immanent Frame Sept 5, 2013
This persistent closed-mindedness—the insistence that any and every text and phenomenon be read back into one grand Manichean narrative—is not a problem unique to Gregory: indeed, the work that his resembles more than any other is Jonathan Israel’s Radical Enlightenment, a clarion call for a robust secularity. Both of these books were written by venerable, erudite early modern scholars, convinced that the die of modernity were cast somewhere around 1650. They are both inordinately long—some of the longest nonfiction works published for mass consumption in the last few years. They are both obsessed with Spinoza. And both authors adopt the pose of a Cassandra, howling obvious truths into a world too blinkered by its iPhones to understand. Their great length, and unending cascade of details, stands in for a paucity of theoretical complexity. For both of them, the story itself is extremely simple: in the seventeenth century, there was a grand parting of the ways, and ever since then the children of light have been combating the children of darkness.
books  reviews  historiography  Reformation  Europe-Early_Modern  16thC  17thC  18thC  19thC  20thC  religious_history  intellectual_history  history_of_science  economic_history  cultural_history  church_history  political_history  democracy  Catholics  Protestants  Spinoza  monism  atheism  secularism  tolerance  metaphysics  theology  modernity  EF-add 
september 2013 by dunnettreader
Christopher Nadon ed - Enlightenment and Secularism: Essays on the Mobilization of Reason (2013)
Enlightenment and Secularism is a collection of twenty eight essays that seek to understand the connection between the European Enlightenment and the emergence of secular societies, as well as the character or nature of those societies. The contributors are drawn from a variety of disciplines including History, Sociology, Political Science, and Literature. Most of the essays focus on a single text from the Enlightenment, borrowing or secularizing the format of a sermon on a text, and are designed to be of particular use to those teaching and studying the history of the Enlightenment within a liberal arts curriculum. --**-- Christopher Nadon is Ass Prof, Gov Dept at Claremont McKenna College. He is author ofXenophon’s Prince: Republic and Empire in the Cyropaedia. --**-- Some recent scholarship on the Enlightenment has placed so much emphasis on differences from country to country, between high and low, and between radical and moderate, that we risk not seeing the forest for the trees. This volume gives all the attention one could want to diversity by featuring careful attention on particular writings by writers from different countries, including critics of the Enlightenment as well as fervent supporters. At the same time, it shows a unity of concern within this diversity by treating a single set of political, economic, religious and social issues revolving around the question of secularism and religion. As a whole, the book gives us a rich account of thought in the Enlightenment. In addition, many of the individual essays are important and original contributions to scholarship on a single thinker or book. — Christopher Kelly, Boston College
books  kindle-available  intellectual_history  Enlightenment  17thC  18thC  Britain  Dutch  France  Germany  French_Enlightenment  German_Idealism  historiography  historical_sociology  human_nature  mind-body  theology  political_philosophy  moral_philosophy  secularism  tolerance  liberty  EF-add 
september 2013 by dunnettreader
Jonathan Sheehan: Enlightenment, Religion, and the Enigma of Secularization: A Review Essay (2003)
JSTOR: The American Historical Review, Vol. 108, No. 4 (October 2003), pp. 1061-1080 -- See Dhor Wahrman Intro to Sheehan and Van Kley papers -- Summary from Tufts papers site -- Jonathan Sheehan asserts that until recently scholars have assumed that the Enlightenment was a fundamentally secularizing force, one that sought nothing less than the speedy extinction of religion. But in the past ten years, he argues, religion has returned to the Enlightenment. While modern scholars have long listened carefully to the complaints of the devout, they have just rediscovered that religion in the eighteenth century was not only alive and well but indeed at the very heart of its intellectual life. This resurrection of religion has happened along a broad resurgence of historical interest in religious topics since 1989. But, Sheehan insists, the debut of religion on the stage of the Enlightenment has been one of the most dramatic moments in this shift. After all, he reminds us, the Enlightenment has traditionally been read as the very cradle of the secular world. Making religion into a cornerstone of the Enlightenment thus raises troubling questions about the precise nature of this secularizing vision. Sheehan maps this new enthusiasm for matters of the spirit onto what he sees as a communal discomfort with the history of the Enlightenment and modernity. The injection of religion into the Enlightenment, he maintains, is part of a revision of the history of secular society that has sent the very category of "the Enlightenment" - long defined as an anti-religious philosophical program - into great turmoil. In the end, though, Sheehan concludes, these difficulties are productive because they help historians develop more expansive and rigorous approaches to the Enlightenment, religion, and secular modernity. His essay suggests how this literature can also be used to address similar issues in other times and places. -- Downloaded pdf to Note
article  jstor  historiography  18thC  Enlightenment  religious_history  religious_culture  secularism  modernization  downloaded  EF-add 
august 2013 by dunnettreader
RELIGION IS NOT WHAT IT USED TO BE | Pandaemonium - Kenan Malik
Linda Woodhead on ‘How Religious Identity has Changed’

Linda Woodhead is one of the most acute observers of contemporary religion. Professor of sociology of religion at Lancaster University, director of the AHRC/ESRC Religion and Society research programme, and organizer of the Westminster Faith Debates, her empirical work has helped shape the understanding of the ways in which the meaning of faith has transformed in recent decades. I am delighted that she has written an essay forPandaemonium on the changing landscape of religious identity in Britain. The essay presents an important argument about what has changed, and why, an argument that challenges many current ideas about ‘the return of religion’. My thanks to Linda for the essay, and I hope that it provides a useful framework for debate.
religion  21stC  Britain  secularism  Church_of_England  atheism  religious_culture 
august 2013 by dunnettreader
Hillel Fradkin , Lewis Libby: Erdogan's War on Ataturk's Legacy | Hudson Institute
Erdogan's bulldozers seek to remake not just Gezi Park, but the face of Ataturk's Turkey. Erdogan has just broken ground on a massive new bridge across the Bosporus to be named for Ottoman Sultan Selim I, often known as Selim the Grim. As all Turkish school children know, Selim's conquests in 1517 first won Ottoman sultans the title of Caliph. Ottoman rulers bore this title for the next 400 years, until Ataturk abolished it. On an elevated headland on the Asian side of Istanbul, facing Europe, Erdogan now undertakes to build the largest mosque in the world. Highly visible almost everywhere in Istanbul, it will resemble and surpass the great, celebratory mosques built over centuries by the Ottoman sultans. No such mosque has been built since Ataturk ended the caliphate. Thus, the square, the bridge, the mosque, the marching song are each a repudiation of Ataturk's legacy. They herald the caliphate over the republic, Erdogan's vision over Ataturk's.

By insisting on rebuilding these barracks, Erdogan honors those who resisted the secularization and the pro-Western movement that created modern Turkey. Indeed, it was Ataturk who razed the barracks and built the park seventy years ago as a sign of Turkey's modernization and secularism. Quite literally, what Ataturk built, Erdogan tears down. What Ataturk reviled, Erdogan prizes.

Erdogan has shown no sign of shifting course, as he continues to polarize. If, as expected, he responds to these challenges, as other politicians before him, by solidifying his base, he will lean even more toward Islamist and neo-Ottoman interests.
MENA  democracy  Turkey  Islamic_civilization  Ottomans  secularism  authoritarian  EU 
august 2013 by dunnettreader

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