• Part of
    Ubiquity Network logo

    Read Chapter
  • No readable formats available
  • Negotiating the Balance of Religious Freedom and Equal Rights

    Jody Heymann, Aleta Sprague, Amy Raub

    Chapter from the book: Heymann, J et al. 2020. Advancing Equality: How Constitutional Rights Can Make a Difference Worldwide.


    Freedom of religion has long been recognized as a fundamental value. At the same time, throughout history, individuals and governments have invoked religion to justify discrimination and violence. This chapter explores this tension, examining to what extent all 193 constitutions both ensure that all religions can thrive and protect all people’s fundamental rights; of particular importance, this chapter examines whether constitutional equal rights take precedence over discriminatory religious or customary laws or practices. This chapter further evaluates whether constitutions’ various provisions on religion are consistent. Specifically, this chapter examines whether constitutions that protect freedom of religion simultaneously privilege one religion above others; likewise, we analyze whether constitutions that include a commitment to secularism nevertheless give special recognition to a particular faith.

    Chapter Metrics:

    How to cite this chapter
    Heymann, J et al. 2020. Negotiating the Balance of Religious Freedom and Equal Rights. In: Heymann, J et al, Advancing Equality. California: University of California Press. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1525/luminos.81.f

    This chapter distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution + Noncommercial + NoDerivatives 4.0 license. Copyright is retained by the author(s)

    Peer Review Information

    This book has been peer reviewed. See our Peer Review Policies for more information.

    Additional Information

    Published on Jan. 14, 2020