Posts Tagged ‘United States’
Religion News Service reports that a new book about Christian identity is inadvertently tapping into the U.S.’s racial history.
Writing on the occasion of the National Day of Religious Freedom—observed in the United States on January 16—historian David Sehat, author of The Myth of American Religious Freedom, argues that the story of religious freedom is a “myth” that “distorts the current debate about religion in public life.” The notions of church–state separation, religious decline and exceptional liberty—all three of which are central to the narrative of religious freedom in the U.S.—are mythical and foreclose productive discussion about religion in American society, Sehat argues.
“Can you do counterterrorism without theology?” Increasingly, critics are calling into question the Western strategy of supporting moderate and more “acceptable” forms of Islam throughout the world. In response to the question above, posted at The Guardian, Mehdi Hasan, a senior editor at the New Statesman, argues that “it is not the business of the state to back one or other interpretation of Islam – or any other faith.”
Education Review, an open-access online journal, reviews the recently published Public Education, America’s Civil Religion: A Social History (Teachers College Press, 2009) by Carl Bankston III and Stephen Caldas. While critical of some aspects of the argument laid out in the book, the reviewer is intrigued by the authors’ account of the development of schooling in the United States through the concept of “civil religion” and their skeptical perspective on Americans’ devotion to education.