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Religion, Democracy, and Human Rights

Course number: W3991

This course will begin with a focus on the work of four classic thinkers in the critical analysis of religion: Rousseau, Marx, Tocqueville and Weber. We will discuss the meaning of the secularization thesis in their work, the relation of religion to modernity, and their views, when relevant, on the relation between religion and democracy. We then turn to contemporary authors involved in rethinking the secularization thesis, the place of religion in modernity as well as its relation to democracy. The works of Casanova, Assad, Rawls, Taylor and Habermas will be read.