Religion and Human Rights

Cultural pluralism, religious diversity, and human rights

The contemporary process of global mobility has impacted on the social, cultural and religious homogeneity, either real or socially constructed in many nations. This has led to the acknowledgement of diversity in various parts of the world. At various levels this transition is governed by civil authorities as well as by other social actors, such as different religious institutions. Today, the significance of religion within post-secular society lends to multifarious interpretations that try to explain the individualization of belief, the challenge of the fundamentalist movements, and the use of religion for one's identity. The continuous process of interaction and mutual influence  between cultural pluralism and/or religious diversity, on the one hand, and human rights, on the other hand, will be studied by focusing on specific research topics, preferably in a comparative and interdisciplinary way, such as: (i) minorities identification and protection strategies (potential, content and implementation of cultural rights) and their relations with the "language" of human rights; (ii) mapping "religious minorities", "new religious movements", and atheist groups; (iii) cultural and legal responses to religious diversity; (iv) religious strategies to adapt to human rights issues; (v) civil and religious "institutional arrangements" for the recognition of religious diversity.

Current activities include a joint conference on Religion and Human Rights (opens in a new window) at the University of Padua and a joint PhD programme on 'Human Rights, Society, and Multi Level-Governance'. (opens in a new window)

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