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Blog // Thoughts
April 21, 2008

Equal Liberty of Conscience

Thanks to Bruce at Mainstream Baptist for drawing my attention to the release of Martha Nussbaum’s new book, Equal Liberty of Conscience. I as aware this was coming, but had not noticed it’s launch. As I understand it, Nussbaum goes back to Roger Williams’ understanding of liberty of conscience as a way to re-understand the […]

Thanks to Bruce at Mainstream Baptist for drawing my attention to the release of Martha Nussbaum’s new book, Equal Liberty of Conscience. I as aware this was coming, but had not noticed it’s launch. As I understand it, Nussbaum goes back to Roger Williams’ understanding of liberty of conscience as a way to re-understand the notion of the separation of church and state.

Those of you who know me or regularly read this blog can guess why that idea alone is enough t get me enthused.

To me liberty of conscience is the radically non-constantinian idea that lets us re-think church for a pluralistic society (and cosmopolitan society). Too often, it is assumed that this is some kind of liberal (in the Lockian sense, not the FoxNews sense) compromise. Rather, I see it as the development away from Locke and towards real plurality.

It’s fascinating that our troubled and challenging times are seeing a resurrection of Williams’ ideas and I’m keen to see what a thinker like Nussbaum, who is literate with both liberal philosophy and the politics of globalisation, can make of it.

[tags] Liberty Of Conscience [/tags]

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