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International Law and ReligionHistorical and Contemporary Perspectives$
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Martti Koskenniemi, Mónica García-Salmones Rovira, and Paolo Amorosa

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780198805878

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2017

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780198805878.001.0001

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The Religion/Secularism Debate in Human Rights Literature

The Religion/Secularism Debate in Human Rights Literature

Constitutive Tensions between Christian, Islamic, and Secular Perspectives

(p.135) 6 The Religion/Secularism Debate in Human Rights Literature
International Law and Religion

John Haskell

Oxford University Press

The tension between religion and secularism within the field of human rights is a popular topic in contemporary international legal scholarship. In the first section of the chapter, I map the arguments between Christianity, Islam, and liberal secular perspectives: on the one hand, exploring the different styles of treatment available within scholarship, and on the other hand, demonstrating how they bear a constitutive relationship to each other that reveals a common aesthetic sensibility and set of disciplinary assumptions among concerned scholars. Whatever differences exist in the texts, the paper seeks to show that authors only tend to produce four varieties of argument around the rhetorical trope law/religion/secularism, and that each of these four varieties are dependent upon their seemingly antagonistic counterparts.

Keywords:   international law, human rights, Islam, Christianity, secular liberalism, critical legal studies, historical sociology, international legal history, international legal theory, theology

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