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Beyond Religious FreedomThe New Global Politics of Religion$
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Elizabeth Shakman Hurd

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780691166094

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: October 2017

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691166094.001.0001

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International Religious Freedom

International Religious Freedom

Chapter:
(p.37) Chapter 3 International Religious Freedom
Source:
Beyond Religious Freedom
Author(s):

Elizabeth Shakman Hurd

Publisher:
Princeton University Press
DOI:10.23943/princeton/9780691166094.003.0003

This chapter develops three interrelated claims about the politics of governing social difference through religious rights and freedoms. First, conceiving and governing social difference through religious rights singles out individuals and groups for legal protection as religious individuals and collectivities. Second, governing through religious rights shapes how states and other political authorities distinguish groups from each other, often in law. Third, contemporary international religious freedom advocacy emphasizes belief as the core of religion. The chapter unfolds in three parts, each elaborating on various aspects of these claims through a combination of empirical illustrations and theoretical discussion. The first section on the global political production of religious difference draws on an extended discussion of the Rohingya in Myanmar. The second section on the creation of a landscape populated by faith communities and the effects on those excluded from such designations incorporates examples from the Central African Republic, Guatemala, India, and South Sudan. A final section on the mutually supportive relations between religious freedom advocacy, the creation of a believing religious subject, and the ideology of the free religious marketplace builds on the work of anthropologists and religious studies scholars who complicate the notion of belief as the core of religion.

Keywords:   social difference, religious rights, religious freedom, Rohingya, Myanmar, Central Africa, Guatemala, India, South Sudan

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