If we recognize that the concept of secularism originates and develops from the influence of Western culture and Christianity, we must take into account the possibility to rethink the distinction between politics, religion and law in multicultural and multireligious democracies. The aim of this work is to question the neutralist conception of secularism, which is characterized by the belief that the exclusion of religious elements from public sphere and legislation to guarantee of equality in a context characterized by religious pluralism. At this aim, I analyze the thought of two of the most influential political philosophers, John Rawls and Jürgen Habermas, who represent the neutralist view of secularism, as well as the criticism addressed to them by multiculturalist theorists – Bhikhu Parekh and Tariq Modood –, who suggest giving up the abandon of the rhetoric of neutrality in the construction of the political sphere and regulations, to pay more attention to the demands coming from individuals belonging to religious and cultural minorities. Indeed, particularly when these issues involve significant areas where the culturally conditioned nature of some institutions is more visible – family, marriage, hereditary issues – the possibility that they can be regulated in a different way is also taken into account. Therefore, a detailed analysis of the proposal is given to adopt a system of legal pluralism, with a special attention to an experiment started in the UK, which provides religious communities the possibility to go to religious arbitration tribunals, operating under the indirect control of the English courts, related to family law. The description of this case aims at emphasizing the need to seek for new consistent means with the idea of secularism I have tried to suggest. Such a secularism is based upon the belief that only a neutral public sphere and legislation can guarantee equality, but tries to embrace diversity and to suggest new political theories. As matter of fact, the channels of participation through which democratic systems have tried to integrate diversity do not seem to be able to face the requests from individuals who do not fully identify into the majority culture, which means thinking about new strategies of inclusion – for example legal pluralism – so to ensure the very value assumptions promoted by democracy, that is to say pluralism and equal liberty.
|Titolo:||Democrazia e secolarismo. Il pluralismo religioso nelle società multiculturali|
|Altri titoli:||Democracy and secularism. Religious pluralism in multicultural societies|
|Data di pubblicazione:||12-apr-2013|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||8.2 Tesi di dottorato (Ex-ROAD)|