"Faith-based Non-governmental Organizations in the Public Square"

Michigan Law Authors
Publish Date
The Changing Nature of Religious Rights under International Law
Publication Type
Book Chapter

The chapter explores the significance of emerging religious NGOs and their impact in developing a new grammar of engagement with human rights and international law in different contexts and with complex agendas. The role and function of NGOs in religiously related legal disputes is used to suggest the distinction between institutional, doctrinal, and theoretical approaches to study of the relationship between religion and law is sometimes unhelpful, preventing us from understanding the phenomenon under examination. A more integrated understanding, drawing on each of these approaches and seeing how they relate to each other, may be more illuminating. Second, the chapter suggests, preliminarily, that the phenomenon of faith-based organizations should be more integrated into doctrinal and theoretical debates in the area of law and religion, particularly how liberal society is to engage with organized religion where there is a fundamental dispute regarding who represents that religion, or regarding its basic tenets.

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