Religion in the public sphere

Philosophy and Social Criticism 40 (6):535-554 (2014)
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Commonplace among deliberative theorists is the view that, when defending preferred laws and policies, citizens should appeal only to reasons they expect others reasonably to accept. This view has been challenged on the grounds that it places an undue burden on religious citizens who feel duty-bound to appeal to religious reasons to justify preferred positions. In response, I develop a conception of democratic deliberation that provides unlimited latitude regarding the sorts of reasons that can be introduced, so long as one is prepared to defend them against criticism. Moreover, I contend that religious citizens have a powerful incentive, based on their religious convictions, to be fully responsive to criticism. I defend this proposition by drawing on Robert Erlewine’s account of Hermann Cohen’s ‘religion of reason’.



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Andrew Smith
University of Arizona

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References found in this work

Political Liberalism.John Rawls - 1993 - Columbia University Press.
Justice as fairness: a restatement.John Rawls (ed.) - 2001 - Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press.
Political Liberalism by John Rawls. [REVIEW]Philip Pettit - 1994 - Journal of Philosophy 91 (4):215-220.
Justice as Fairness: A Restatement.C. L. Ten - 2003 - Mind 112 (447):563-566.
Democracy and Tradition.Jeffrey Stout - 2003 - Princeton University Press.

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