RELATED EVENTSFebruary 12, 2013
January 7, 2013
December 14, 2012
Policy Consultation on Religious Freedom, Violent Religious Extremism, and Constitutional Reform in Muslim-Majority Countries: Lessons for U.S. Policy MakersDecember 7, 2012
October 24, 2012
Which Model, Whose Liberty?: Differences between the U.S. and European Approaches to Religious FreedomOctober 11, 2012
September 14, 2012
September 13, 2012
Religious Freedom and the HHS Mandate: a Conversation with Representatives Jeff Fortenberry, Diane Black, Ann Marie Buerkle and Dan LipinskiJune 28, 2012
May 14, 2012
May 1, 2012
April 10, 2012
March 22, 2012
March 16, 2012
March 1, 2012
February 13, 2012
February 10, 2012
January 31, 2012
December 4, 2011
November 17, 2011
October 20, 2011
September 23, 2011
May 3, 2011
April 28, 2011
AT THE CENTER
PROJECT LEADERSThomas F. Farr is Director of the Religious Freedom Project at the Berkley Center for Religion, Peace, and World Affairs and a Visiting Associate...
Timothy Samuel Shah is Associate Director of the Religious Freedom Project at the Berkley Center For Religion, Peace, and World Affairs and...
ASSOCIATE SCHOLARSJosé Casanova is one of the world's top scholars in the sociology of religion. He is a professor at the Department of Sociology at Georgetown...
Jean Bethke Elshtain is the Laura Spelman Rockefeller Professor of Social and Political Ethics at the University of Chicago, where she also has...
William Inboden is Assistant Professor at the LBJ School of Public Affairs and Distinguished Scholar at the Strauss Center for International...
David Novak holds the J. Richard and Dorothy Shiff Chair of Jewish Studies as Professor of the Study of Religion and Professor of Philosophy at the...
Daniel Philpott is exploring Catholic and Protestant contributions to democracy from the years 1800-2000 for the Christianity and Freedom Project....
Mona Siddiqui, OBE is Professor of Islamic and Inter-religious Studies and Assistant Principal for Religion and Society at the University of...
Monica Duffy Toft is Associate Professor of Public Policy at the John F. Kennedy School of Government and Director of the Initiative on Religion in...
Roger Trigg, of St Cross College, Oxford, is Senior Research Fellow in the Ian Ramsey Centre, University of Oxford, and a member of both the...
PROJECT STAFFA.J. Nolte joined the RFP at the beginning of October 2012, after two years as a research assistant at the Center for Complex Operations, National...
Kyle Vander Meulen joined the Berkley Center in January 2011. Before coming to the Center, he completed his master's studies in Divinity at the...
In an article in the Deseret News on the 2013 State Department religious freedom report, Tim Shah discussed the discouraging trend of worsening restrictions on religious freedom, and the positive link between religious freedom and peace, stability and democratization.
In an article about blasphemy laws, RFP director Tom Farr made the case that religious freedom can prevent violent religious extremism, and asked readers to imagine a world in which Osama Bin-Laden had grown up in a free society, and exposed to a wider variety of religious ideas.
In a lecture delivered on May 8, RFP scholar Roger Trigg explored the links between the increasing marginalization of religion in many western societies, and philosophers of religion who reduce religious belief to something subjective, which can not be established as universally true or false.
On April 25, Roger Trigg addressed a conference held at the Iona Institute in Dublin on the contributions of Christianity to the west, and Ireland in particular. Audio of Dr. Trigg's address, which focussed on Christianity and human rights, can be found here
Tom Farr addressed the question of whether there are limits to religious freedom on which religions can agree at the 2013 Common Word Conference, held at Georgetown University on April 24. Video of his presentation can be found here.
In an article entitled "Is Religious Freedom Special?" Roger Trigg argues that religious freedom is not merely special pleading for religion, but vital for the preservation of free societies, and increasingly under threat in Europe.
RFP Director Tom Farr appeared on the EWTN show Around the World with Raymond Arroyo to address the link between the absence of religious freedom and the rise of terrorism and violent religious extremism.
RFP Associate Director Timothy Shah presented the paper, "Religious Freedom, Democratization, and Economic Development," co-authored by Anthony Gill, to the Annual Meeting of the Association for the Study of Religion, Economics, and Culture (ASREC) in Washington, D.C. on April 13, 2013.
The Library of Congress has named Jean Elshtain it's 2013 Kluge Chair in Modern Culture. Dr. Elshtain will spend five months at the Library of Congress, conducting research on her upcoming book on the cultural role of modern film.
In an interview with EWTN about the recent kidnapping of two Syrian bishops, Tom Farr called for a more proactive U.S. foreign policy on religious freedom, which would replace statements of condemnation with positive action to help countries institutionalize this beneficial liberty.
RFP scholar Mona Siddiqui was chosen in February as one of the new editors of Brill's online Encyclopedia of the Qur'an. This project, produced by the International Qur'anic Studies Association, will produce ongoing supplements to their current print and online versions.
Writing for The Scotsman, Stuart Kelly described Mona Siddiqui's forthcoming book Christians, Muslims and Jesus as "a significant work of inter-faith understanding," which "offers an important model of how such theological dialogues might ideally be conducted without either bigoted intransigence or relativistic self-censoring.”
In a new essay published in the most recent issue of the Journal of Faith and International Affairs, Daniel Philpott argues for the integral connection between religious freedom and peacebuilding.
RFP Director Tom Farr's lecture for the Knights of Columbus international symposium, Voices: The Lay State and Religious Liberty, was recently published in a new Spanish translation.
In a new essay, RFP scholar Daniel Philpott offers predictions on Pope Francis' future leadership on religious freedom, and strategies he might use to highlight this critical issue.
Christianity and Freedom scholar Elizabeth Prodromou contrasts the freedom surrounding the election of Pope Francis with the persecution experienced by Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew.
In a provocative and wide-ranging conversation sponsored by RFP, Pastor Rick Warren and Professors Robert George and John DiIulio discussed the importance of religious freedom.
RFP scholar Mona Siddiqui delivered her inaugural lecture, entitled Law and Love in Christianity and Islam, on March 4 at Edinburgh University. Professor Siddiqui addressed the similarities and differences between Christian and Muslim conceptions of divine love, law and scripture.
Thomas Farr and Daniel Philpott spoke on religion and foreign policy and religious peace-building at a Catholic University of America conference on "Pacem in Terris at Fifty" April 9 and 10.
At the 2013 Conservative Political Action Conference, RFP Director Tom Farr participated in a workshop entitled "Religious Freedom: a Winning Issue for Conservatives." The workshop also featured Representative Diane Black and Rabbi Aryeh Spero and was held on Friday, March 15.
On March 6, RFP director Thomas Farr delivered the Annual True Family Lecture on Catholic thought at Oklahoma University. Dr. Farr's lecture, entitled "Christians May Dance No Longer," highlighted the urgent need for Christians in the west to speak out on behalf of persecuted Christians and other religious minorities.
In a recent interview, Christianity and Freedom Project co-chair Allen Hertzke described his new book The Future of Religious Freedom: Global Challenges. He explained both the dangers of rising threats to religious freedom and its positive contributions to political development and security.
Writing in response to the recent public conversation between Pastor Rick Warren and RFP Associate Director Timothy Shah, Interfaith Service at Georgetown blogger Trishla Jain reflected that Pastor Warren changed the way she thought about healthcare in the developing world and its relationship to religious freedom.
On February 21-23, the John Paul Institute at The Catholic University of America held a conference entitled “Dignitatis Humanae and the Recovery of Religious Freedom”, featuring a video keynote by Cardinal Angelo Scola. RFP Associate Director Timothy Shah moderated a panel at the conference, focusing on Dignitatis Humanae and the common good.
> Tim Shah Delivers Public Lecture on the Conceptual Roots of Religious Freedom at Rutgers University
On February 21, RFP Associate Director Timothy Shah delivered a public lecture at Rutgers University, in which he addressed the conceptual roots of religious freedom in the Christian tradition. Dr. Shah also led an afternoon faculty seminar on universal human rights in the thought of the church fathers.
Commenting on the Religious Freedom Project's public event with Pastor Rick Warren, journalist Katherine Lopez of National Review Online described it as a "shadow SOTU." Lopez praised Warren and RFP Associate Director Tim Shah for their forceful discussion of religious freedom, particularly the HHS mandate.
> Roger Trigg Argues Christians' Rights Are More Likely to be Challenged in Europe than Other Faiths
In response to a recent European court decision against 3 Christian religious freedom claims, RFP scholar Roger Trigg argued European judges often falsely believe they understand what is and is not a core belief of Christianity, leading them to challenge the rights of Christians more than Muslims or Sikhs.
RFP scholar Daniel Philpott will give the introductory lecture of the National Cathedral's lenten series on reconciliation, on Sunday, February 17 at 10:10 A.M. Dr. Philpott's lecture will focus on his research into the role political reconciliation can play in promoting peace and justice after genocide and civil war.
Noted Jewish theologian and RFP scholar David Novak paid tribute to Pope Benedict Tuesday on his blog First Thoughts. Novak praised the Pope’s focus on Biblicism in Catholic theology and expressed his hope for a personal theological dialogue after his resignation.
RFP director Thomas Farr will deliver the annual True Family Lecture at the University of Oklahoma on March 6. This lecture has previously featured Catholic thought leaders such as Avery Cardinal Dulles and George Weigel. Dr. Farr’s lecture will be entitled “Christians May Dance No Longer: The Global Crisis in Religious Freedom.”
In a recent article in Foreign Policy, RFP scholar William Inboden criticized Senator Rand Paul's foreign policy vision as a return to non-interventionism.
RFP director Thomas Farr joined an Amicus Curiae brief filed with the Supreme Court. The brief cites the court's precedent of allowing the democratic process to play out on contentious social issues to argue against "recognition of a constitutional right to same-sex marriage."
The influential evangelical magazine Christianity Today chose Just and Unjust Peace by RFP scholar Daniel Philpott for its “2013 book award” in the mission/global affairs category. In total, 10 winners and 9 notables were selected from over 455 titles submitted by 68 publishers.
RFP associate scholar Roger Trigg analyzes four major decisions recently handed down from the European Court of Human Rights involving religious freedom.
Rick Warren, best-selling author of The Purpose Driven Life and founding pastor of Saddleback Church, spoke with Timothy Shah about religious freedom and faith-based solutions to some of today's most pressing problems.
related | event video
RFP Director Tom Farr debated the question, “Is the Promotion of International LGBT Rights Given Greater Priority than the Promotion of International Religious Freedom?” among a panel of scholars assembled by the group Common Sense Society.
RFP Associate Scholar Mona Siddiqui has edited a new book, The Routledge Reader on Christian-Muslim Relations. The book includes an introductory chapter by Siddiqui with historical and contemporary contributions from key scholars engaged in Christian/Muslim dialogue.
RFP Associate Scholar Daniel Philpott addresses the controversial HHS mandate and its implications for the status of American religious freedom.
Explore the origins and development of religious freedom in the Christian tradition using the Religious Freedom Project’s interactive online sourcebook containing literature and primary documents.
Join the Religious Freedom Project as it launches a two-year exploration of Christianity’s contributions to the construction and diffusion of freedom. RSVP today!
In a Family Research Council webcast titled "The Cry of the Martyrs," RFP Director Tom Farr discusses the ongoing assaults to religious liberty around the world.
RFP Scholar Roger Trigg discussed the topic "Is Belief in God a Basic Instinct?" in a segment of the UK's Channel 4 program, "4Thought," a program dedicated to questions of faith, morals, religion, and ethics.
RFP associate director Timothy Shah spoke at a major conference on Christian martyrdom, emphasizing the positive contributions that persecuted and martyred Christians have made to freedom throughout history and indeed, continue to make today.
RFP Director Tom Farr will speak at a conference on "The Status of the Christian Communities in Iraqi Kurdistan: Challenges and Opportunities," sponsored by the US Commission on International Religious Freedom and the Catholic University of America Law School, December 5, 2012.
Major Catholic journalist John Allen reports on the increasingly problematic issue of the global persecution of Christians, highlighting the work of RFP director Tom Farr presented at a recent conference at Notre Dame.
RFP Director Tom Farr and other Catholic writers responded to the 2012 election results in an online symposium published by Aleteia.
Scholars from Europe and North America debate emerging conflicts for religious liberty arising from a greater emphasis on equality claims in a new report from the RFP's April 2012 symposium at Oxford University
Of God's Century Michael Emerson writes, "Rarely is a book written that has the potential to save and improve the lives of millions of people. This is such a book."
RFP Director Tom Farr and Associate Director Timothy Shah join scholars and religious leaders from around the world to address the growing problem of widespread persecution of Christians around the world.
BBC Radio's "Desert Island Discs," one of its longest running shows, interviewed RFP scholar Mona Siddiqui. Siddiqui discussed themes from her life and her unique role in academia.
Experts from government and across the country examine the role religious freedom should play in Arab Spring countries in a new report from the RFP's March 2012 symposium.
On Wednesday, October 24th, the RFP hosted a discussion of two books which chronicle the history of religion’s role in American foreign policy, and speculate about future threats to religious liberty. Andrew Preston, author of Sword of the Spirit, Shield of the Faith, and Gerard Bradley, editor of Challenges to Religious Liberty in the Twenty-First Century led the exciting discussions on these new works.
Top scholars discuss the sources of religious freedom in the West, its universality, and whether the American context is unique in a new report detailing the RFP's November 2011 symposium.
In this book review of Religious Liberty, Why Now? Defending an Embattled Human Right principally authored by RFP Associate Director Timothy Shah, Francis Beckwith praises the work's call to look to the practical implications of religious freedom being attacked.
The NAE's Fall 2012 issue of Insight focuses on the state of religious freedom around the world and features a statement by RFP Director Tom Farr.
The Hoover Institution’s Policy Review on October 2 published an article by William Inboden on the links between religious freedom and national security. Titled “Religious Freedom and National Security,” the article draws correlations between religious persecution and security threats, and argues for a much more substantial role for religious liberty as a component of national security strategy.
RFP Director Tom Farr writes about a new report of the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life which details the troubling rise in global restrictions on religion.
RFP Director Tom Farr spoke at a conference on "International Religious Freedom: An Imperative for Peace and the Common Good," held at the Catholic University of America on September 12, 2012.
RFP Scholar Mona Siddiqui talks about a surprise resolution to a Pakistani blasphemy case on BBC Radio's Thought for the Day segment.
Discussing his new book Equality, Freedom, and Religion, RFP Scholar Roger Trigg answers questions from Theos Think Tank on why he wrote the book and the major challenges facing state-religion interactions today.
Big Questions Online asks Thomas Farr, "Is Religious Freedom Necessary for Other Freedoms to Flourish?" In his response, Farr examines the possible links between religious freedom and other important human freedoms.
Appearing in Embassy Magazine, Canada's "Foreign Policy Newspaper," on August 9, 2012, RFP Director Tom Farr discusses the important ambassador choice for Canada's new religious freedom office.
RFP scholar Mona Siddiqui offers a reflection on non-violence for BBC's Thought of the Day in light of the recent shooting in Aurora, CO and last year's shooting in Norway.
Religious Freedom Project director Tom Farr critically examines the new State Department report on International Religious Freedom. The annual report outlines the status of religious freedom in 199 countries and identifies countries of particular concern where religious freedom rights are severely violated.
RFP Associate Scholar Will Inboden addresses the under-reported situation of Mali deterioration, including troubling accounts of religious persecutions throughout the country.
Published in the June/July 2012 issue of First Things, RFP Scholar Daniel Philpott discusses the problems with the current model for seeking post-genocidal justice in his article titled "Peace After Genocide."
Discussing the International Criminal Court's sentencing of Congolese warlord Thomas Lubanga, RFP Scholar Daniel Philpott argues that the prosecution did not go far enough.
RFP Scholar Daniel Philpott writes about the need for reconciliation in the aftermath of the Arab Spring.
Featured in Christianity Today, RFP Associate Director Timothy Shah reflects on the connections between Catholic Saints, Catholic Church Fathers, and the Founding Fathers as the "Fortnight for Freedom" comes to a close.
RFP Director Tom Farr writes about the importance of religious freedom to US foreign policy, encouraging the United States and Western Europe to do more in promoting this basic human right around the world.
RFP Associate Director Timothy Shah and RFP Director Tom Farr discuss the new publication Religious Freedom: Why Now? Defending an Embattled Human Right and provide a summary of its major findings and arguments.
On Thursday, June 28, the RFP hosted a public forum on religious liberty and the HHS contraceptive mandate at Georgetown University’s Gaston Hall.
National Review's Kathryn Jean Lopez speaks with RFP Director Tom Farr about threats to religious liberty at home and abroad in advance of the congressional conversation at Georgetown University.
In the aftermath of the Arab Spring, do Middle Eastern nations need a new relationship between religion and state? On May 14, Georgetown University's Religious Freedom Project held a policy briefing with top experts designed to identify specific policy lessons concerning religion's future political role in Arab Spring countries.
Speaking about Egypt and Hosni Mubarak's prison sentence, RFP Scholar Mona Siddiqui looks to Qur'anic quotations on BBC Radio's "Thought for the Day" segment.
Speaking at the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops' annual conference, RFP director Tom Farr noted the theological and intellectual roots of religious freedom while providing an overview of the challenges to religious freedom around the world.
In her new book The Good Muslim: Reflections on Classical Islamic Law and Theology , RFP Scholar Mona Siddiqui explores the Islamic tradition's rich history of thought on a number of key ethical topics.
RFP Scholar William Inboden is quoted in the New York Times about Barack Obama's understanding of the lessons of the Vietnam War.
Speaking at the 2012 National Religious Freedom Conference on May 24th, 2012, RFP Director Tom Farr delivered a speech entitled "Rising Threats to American Religious Freedom: Framing the Problem."
In an article on war termination and reconciliation in Thailand, the Asia Times references the work of RFP Scholar Monica Duffy Toft.
The widely viewed Kony 2012 video has raised awareness of the atrocities of Uganda's Joseph Kony. But as RFP Scholar Dan Philpott points out in The Huffington Post, the video does not show the decades long work of reconciliation that many Ugandans, inspired by their Christian faith and tribal values, have been working to achieve.
The latest in modern social networking has focused enormous attention on the crimes of Joseph Kony. But the peace-making resources of ancient religious and tribal traditions offer the only way to heal the wounds he has inflicted.
> Watch Video of Bishop Philip Tartaglia's Keynote Address, "Religious Freedom - An Unexpected Issue for Our Times?"
The Roman Catholic Bishop of Paisley, Scotland, Philip Tartaglia, delivers the keynote address for the Religious Freedom Project's international conference, Religious Freedom and Equality: Emerging Conflicts in North America and Europe held at the University of Oxford, April 11-13, 2012.
RFP Scholar Daniel Philpott releases a documentary film with the Fetzer Institute about the aftermath of the Lord’s Resistance Army and the role of the Church in the reconciliation process in Uganda. Uganda: The Challenge of Forgiveness consists of interviews conducted by Philpott with Ugandan leaders discussing the civil war and their post-LRA country.
RFP Scholar Dan Philpott is interviewed on FoxNews about the release of a new documentary film, Uganda: The Challenge of Forgiveness. Philpott produced the film, which focuses on the rebuilding of communities through a spirit of reconciliation, with the Fetzer Institute.
RFP director Tom Farr is interviewed on CSPAN's Book-TV program about his book World of Faith And Freedom: Why International Religious Liberty is Vital to American National Security. Farr discusses how religious freedom, as a fundamental human right, is under siege around the world and he addresses the various challenges to international religious freedom.
LSU Political Scientist James Stoner reviews the new book, Religious Freedom: Why Now? principally authored by Religious Freedom Project associate director Timothy Shah. In his review, Stoner notes the timeliness of the new book and praises its multi-layered approach to the defense of religious liberty.
On Thursday, March 22 the Religious Freedom Project convened a group of leading legal scholars to discuss the tensions between the HHS mandate for contraceptive and other services and religious liberty. The informative discussion can now be viewed online.
Amid the death of Egyptian Coptic Pope Shenouda III, people are questioning how safe the Coptic Christians in Egypt now are. RFP director Tom Farr explores how the Coptic minority in Egypt has been affected by Pope Shenouda III’s death and how the Egyptian society must approach these religious minorities in order to foster a stable democracy in post-revolution Egypt.
RFP Associate Director Timothy Shah speaks with Anthony Gill about his new book Religious Freedom: Why Now? The interview touches on the importance of religious freedom as a fundamental human right and as a key objective for foreign policy makers.
C-SPAN news live-streamed and broadcasted the Religious Freedom Project's symposium on "Religious Freedom and Extremism: Lessons from the Arab Spring." A brief synopsis of the event and the network's video of it are available at C-SPAN's web site.
National Catholic Register senior editor Joan Frawley Desmond, covering the release of "In Defense of Religious Freedom" by Evangelicals and Catholics Together, mentions Religious Freedom Project director Thomas Farr and associate director Timothy Samuel Shah's comments at the RFP's March 1 event on religious freedom.
Religious Freedom Project scholar Mona Siddiqui gave a "Thought for the Day" on BBC Radio 4. Considering a colleague's remark about caring for her mother, who is suffering from dementia, Professor Siddiqui pondered the tension between the religious desire for the good of the afterlife with the human desire to hold on to this life.
Writing in Patheos.com's "Black, White and Gray" blog, Margarita Mooney covers the Religious Freedom Project's event on March 1st celebrating the publication of Religious Freedom: Why Now? Defending an Embattled Human Right . Mooney offers a synopsis of the event and engages with the ideas of Princeton professor Robert George's keynote address.
In his popular Council on Foreign Relations blog, "The Arab Street," CFR Senior Fellow Ed Husain discusses the Religious Freedom Project event, Religious Freedom: Why Now and the dinner that evening which featured Shaykh Hamza Yusuf in conversation with Robert P. George.
In this broadcast discussion, RFP scholar Roger Trigg explains the encroachment that secularization has caused on religious freedom in the public life. Affirming that religious freedom implies freedom for religious expression, Trigg insists that people of religious faith ought to be protected from coercion against their conscience.
RFP Director Tom Farr speaks out against the recent ruling sustaining the overturning of Proposition 8, the California initiative to define marriage as between one man and one woman. Farr explains that the ruling is not based on democratic process and it infringes upon the religious freedom of millions of citizens who voted to protect marriage on religious grounds.
> Presidential Candidate Rick Santorum Signs Religious Freedom Pledge Drafted by RFP Director Tom Farr
Presidential Candidate Rick Santorum is the first candidate to sign the Presidential Pledge for Religious Freedom drafted by RFP Scholar Thomas Farr and Open Doors USA. The pledge is a commitment by presidential candidates to protect religious freedom in full in America and advance religious freedom as part of American foreign policy.
> Fitchburg State University Invites RFP Scholar Monica Duffy Toft for International Studies Speaker Series
Harvard University Associate Professor and RFP scholar Monica Duffy Toft spoke on "resurgent religion, global politics and conflict resolution" as part of the International Studies Speaker series at Fitchburg State University on February 6th, 2012.
Religious Freedom Project Director Thomas Farr explains in a recent interview with Columbia magazine that international religious freedom is in a moment of "global crisis" and that it is imperative that the United States stand up for this "first freedom" around the world
RFP scholar Daniel Philpott recently traveled to Uganda to conduct research on the role of forgiveness in the peace building process. While forgiveness can be under recognized in the peace building process, Philpott shows the role of reconciliation in the wake of the civil war between the LRA and the Ugandan government.
On Monday, February 13, philosopher and RFP scholar Roger Trigg will discuss his new book, Equality, Freedom, and Religion (Oxford, 2012), which raises the question of whether any freedom can be preserved for long if the basic human right to religious liberty is subordinated to other social concerns (particularly to the pursuit of equality). Responding to the book will be William Galston and Helen Alvaré.
> Catholic News Agency Quotes RFP Director Tom Farr on the Obama Administration's Stance Towards Religious Freedom
RFP Director Tom Farr criticizes the Obama administration's recent ruling that religious-based employers must provide certain forms of contraception to their employees even if such actions violate the religion's moral beliefs.
The British newspaper The Telegraph features RFP scholar Roger Trigg’s argument that the courts have been curtailing religious freedoms in favor of other social issues. Trigg promotes the idea of there being reasonable accommodation for religion and that the courts should not take it upon themselves to decide what are or aren’t core values of religion.
RFP Director Tom Farr speaks with Joan Frawley Desmond of the National Catholic Register about the Obama Administration's mandate that employers, including church-affiliated hospitals, agencies and universities, offer contraception and sterilization in their employee health care plans.
RFP scholar Will Inboden looks at recent decisions of the Obama administration on religious liberty and asks, "Is the White House Trying to Turn America into France?" at the Foreign Policy blog Shadow Government
Joan Frawley Desmond of the National Catholic Register speaks with Tom Farr on a number of recent issues related to religious freedom including the just released open letter "Marriage and Religious Freedom: Fundamental Goods that Stand or Fall Together," signed by representatives of Catholic, Protestant, Jewish, and Sikh faiths.
What is the effect of blasphemy and apostasy laws on basic political freedoms of Muslim-majority countries? What happens when Western governments and bodies like the United Nations begin passing similarly motivated restrictions on speech? These and other questions will be addressed by Paul Marshall and Nina Shea as they discuss their new book, Silenced: How Apostasy and Blasphemy Codes are Choking Freedom Worldwide at a Religious Freedom Project event on Tuesday, January 31, 2012.
The Canadian government's decision to open a new office of religious freedom has not been without controversy. Yet in this Globe and Mail editorial, the author argues that the global rise in religious persecution warrants sustained attention. RFP Director Tom Farr is quoted on the important connection between religious freedom and issues of justice and human dignity.
The New York Times featured RFP Associate Director Tim Shah and Director Tom Farr in a special "Room for Debate," centered around the question, "Is Americans' Religious Freedom Under Threat?" The feature also included pieces from Noah Feldman and Michael McConnell who recently debated the question "What's So Special about Religious Freedom?" at the RFP's November 17th conference.
Renowned sociologist of religion David Martin reviews God's Century: Resurgent Religion and Global Politics co-authored by RFP Scholars Monica Duffy Toft, Daniel Philpott, and Timothy Samuel Shah for the Times Literary Supplement.
With the war in Iraq now officially ended, RFP Scholar Monica Duffy Toft addresses some of the challenges the country faces in going forward.
Noted photographer Verena Jaekel's portraiture work of Scottish families is on display at the National Gallery of Scotland. The exhibit features a portrait of RFP Scholar Mona Siddiqui and her family at their home in Dullatur, Scotland.
> University of Edinburgh Appoints RFP Scholar Mona Siddiqui as New Professor of Islamic and Inter-religious Studies
RFP scholar Mona Siddiqui is the first Muslim to be appointed to the University of Edinburgh's School of Divinity where she will teach on and research Islamic theology, ethics, and Christian-Muslim relations. Siddiqui will also be the first to hold the post of Assistant Principal for Religion and Society, allowing her to continue working in the areas of religion and public life.
The National Catholic Register discusses the Religious Freedom Project's public symposium, What's So Special About Religious Freedom held at Georgetown University on November 17. The debate featured Michael McConnell of Stanford University Law School and Noah Feldman of Harvard University Law School.
RFP Scholar Jean Bethke Elshtain will be the fifth recipient of the annual Rev. James V. Schall, S.J. Award for Teaching and Humane Letters presented by the Tocqueville Forum at Georgetown University. The award seeks to recognize individuals who "exemplify the excellence, scholarly breadth, and impact of Father James V. Schall, S.J., Professor of Government at Georgetown University."
In a post on Foreign Policy's "Shadow Government," RFP Scholar Will Inboden offers praise for President Obama's recent World AIDS Day speech which acknowledged the many contributions to fighting AIDS made by the previous administration.
"The Religious Freedom Project of the Berkley Center for Religion, Peace, and World Affairs offers a vital forum for the discussion of religious liberty and its role in ensuring the dignity of the human person...." Read more!
In an editorial for the Australian Broadcasting Company, RFP Scholar David Novak addresses the topic of same-sex marriage and whether or not there is a "right" for same-sex couples to marry.
RFP Director Tom Farr, who co-authored the Presidential Pledge for Religious Freedom, discusses the importance of religious freedom in American foreign and domestic policy and expresses his hope that the pledge would encourage 2012 presidential candidates from all parties to address this increasingly important issue.
RFP Scholar Mona Siddiqui, OBE, is profiled in the UK Foreign & Commonwealth Office's video series See Britain Through My Eyes. In the interview, Siddiqui discusses moving to the UK from Pakistan as a young girl, the development of her academic interest in Islamic law and theology, and raising a family in her home just outside of Glasgow Scotland.
The Royal Society of Canada is a national body of distinguished Canadian scholars established to recognize academic excellence and outstanding contributions to Canadian culture. RFP Scholar David Novak was honored for his research in natural law theory, Jewish-Christian relations and biomedical ethics.
On Thursday, November 10, RFP Scholar Mona Siddiqui, OBE, presented the final lecture for the St. Wilfrid series at North Yorkshire's historic Ripon Cathedral. Her lecture, "Islam and the Question of a Loving God," examined how the different scriptural resources in Islam and Christianity have developed alternative discourses on divine love within each religious tradition.
RFP Associate Director and Scholar in Residence, Timothy Shah, will speak at the Notre Dame Center for Ethics & Culture's conference on "Radical Emancipation." Professor Shah will participate on the panel, "March of the Jacobins: The Global Rise and Decline of Political Secularism," drawing on research from his book (co-authored with RFP Scholars Dan Philpott and Monica Duffy Toft), God's Century.
As Congress decides whether or not to re-fund the US Commission on International Religious Freedom, RFP Director Tom Farr speaks with Christianity Today about the signal such a move would send to those regimes guilty of violating religious freedom.
RFP Associate Scholar Jean Bethke Elshtain responds to the question "What exactly would a Christian platform look like?" for the New York Times column "Room for Debate." In her essay, "Why Prefer Christians?" Professor Elshtain argues that Christians can share broad principles and yet disagree on the policies meant to implement them.
As the Canadian Department of Foreign Affairs begins to construct its new office for religious freedom, the National Post interviewed RFP director Tom Farr, who recently spoke at a consultation on the new Canadian office, about the success and failures of the American model.
> Catholic News Agency Quotes RFP Director Tom Farr on Funding the US Commission on International Religious Freedom
Despite an overwhelming vote in the House to continue funding for the US Commission on International Religious Freedom, the bill has been stalled in the Senate by the placement of an anonymous "hold" on the legislation. Catholic News Agency speaks with Tom Farr about the funding crisis and the continued importance of religious freedom to US foreign policy.
Religious Freedom Project Associate Scholar Monica Duffy Toft will give the annual Wold Lecture at Union College on Tuesday, October 25. Toft will discuss the global resurgence of religion, a phenomenon she and co-authors Dan Philpott and Tim Shah researched in their recent book "God's Century."
The recent increase in attacks against the Coptic Christian community in Egypt have highlighted the importance of religious freedom as the country moves towards democracy. Interfaith Voices, the public radio news program on religion news, speaks with RFP Director Tom Farr about the situation and the approach towards religion the new Egyptian government should take.
Following the release of the recent State Department report on International Religious Freedom, RFP Director Tom Farr joins a spirited discussion on "Voice of Russia" Radio about the report and the particular items of concern listed for Russia.
The government of Canada has decided to establish an Office of International Religious Freedom. The Canadian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Trade had requested RFP Director Tom Farr to appear at a public forum in Ottawa to discuss the establishment of the office and its mission.
Tom Farr reviews the book The Price of Freedom Denied, in the latest edition of the Journal of Church and State. The book, co-authored by Brian Grim and Roger Finke, investigates the complex interrelations between religious repression, that is the denial of the right to religious freedom, and social hostilities throughout the world.
As the world again turns its focus to the possibility of peace in the Middle East, Voice of America asks Religious Freedom Project scholars Timothy Shah and Monica Duffy Toft about the roles, positive and negative, that religious actors can play in bringing about stability and peace to the region.
Would 9/11 have happened if Osama Bin Laden had been raised in a Saudi Arabia that allowed for religious freedom? Instead of the toxic teachings of Wahhabism and Sayyid Qutb, what if he had been exposed to other forms of Islam, to critics of Islam, and to liberal religion-based arguments about justice and the common good?
Roger Trigg argues that since humans are naturally inclined towards religious belief, the subject of religion cannot be ignored but must be part of the public discourse. A proper defense of religious freedom requires more than just state neutrality in religious affairs, and needs a robust commitment to religious liberty.
> RFP Scholar Monica Duffy Toft Writes "Why a Rebel Victory in Libya is Better than a Negotiated Settlement"
> RFP Scholars Daniel Philpott, Timothy Shah, and Monica Duffy Toft Argue Against "The Dangers of Secularism in the Middle East"
> Event Announcement (Friday, July 29): RFP Associate Director Timothy Shah and Associate Scholars Daniel Philpott and Monica Toft Discuss the Interplay Between Religious Freedom, Extremism, and Security
Religious Freedom Project Associate Scholar Mona Siddiqui has been named an Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) as part of the 2011 Queen’s Honours List in recognition for her outstanding services to inter-faith relations.
> RFP Scholars Monica Duffy Toft, Dan Philpott, and Timothy Shah Discuss their New Book "God's Century" with New Hampshire Public Radio
> Listen to RFP Scholars Monica Duffy Toft, Daniel Philpott, and Timothy Shah Discuss Their New Book, God's Century
> Listen In!: RFP Scholar Roger Trigg on Religious Freedom and Human Rights at Iona Institute Conference
RFP Scholar Roger Trigg discusses the emerging conflict between conceptions of “human rights” and religious freedom at a conference hosted by the Iona Institute in October 2010. His talk warns of aggressive secularism’s attempt to remove religion from the public square.