De politiek van ‘interreligieuze dialoog’ Religieuze rechtvaardigingen en ‘rechtvaardige’ verzoening

Streven 84 (6):505-16 (2017)
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Religions and religious actors are increasingly associated with extremism and violence. A mainstream view that sees religions as prone to violence has been affirmed within the West. Yet, to affirm that religions promote anti-democratic projects and are inclined to violence can only partially capture the impact of religious voices in contemporary societies. In fact, religions have often played an important role in promoting democratic transition and religiously inspired doctrines have importantly supported peace and reconciliation processes in divided societies. This paper argues that the mainstream view reproduces and extends a traditional liberal wariness toward the alleged incendiary role of religions in politics, the so-called doctrine of religious restraint. This view, I argue, is based on a misinterpretation of contemporary liberal theory and, especially, of Rawls’s Political Liberalism. The paper shows that Rawls’s framework instead provides an extensive accommodation of religions in political life. Starting from this premise, this paper responds to the mainstream view by focussing on the role of religious actors and sensitivities in reconciling divided societies.
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