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Vol 21 No 10 Oct/Nov 2016

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Religious Offence and Human Rights: The Implications of Defamation of Religions


ISBN13: 9781107612204
Published: March 2016
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Country of Publication: UK
Format: Paperback (Hardback in 2014)
Price: £24.99
Hardback edition , ISBN13 9781107039575



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Should international law be concerned with offence to religions and their followers? Even before the 2005 publication of the Danish Mohammed cartoons, Muslim States have endeavoured to establish some reputational protection for religions on the international level by pushing for recognition of the novel concept of 'defamation of religions'.

This study recounts these efforts as well as the opposition they aroused, particularly by proponents of free speech. It also addresses the more fundamental issue of how religion and international law may relate to each other. Historically, enforcing divine commands has been the primary task of legal systems, and it still is in numerous municipal jurisdictions.

By analysing religious restrictions of blasphemy and sacrilege as well as international and national norms on free speech and freedom of religion, Lorenz Langer argues that, on the international level at least, religion does not provide a suitable rationale for legal norms.

Subjects:
Human Rights and Civil Liberties
Contents:
Introduction
Part I: 1. The Danish cartoons revisited
2. Legal responses to religious insult
3. The current legal framework
4. Invention of new alternatives? The concept of defamation of religions before and after the cartoons
5. Defining defamation
Part II: 6. First principles: norms and norm-rationales
7. Norm-rationales for the regulation of speech
8. The religious rationale
9. Religion, its defamation, and international law.