Here Tariq Modood introduces the Zutshi-Smith Symposium on The Commission on Religion and Belief in British Public Life and the papers collected in this theme.
British society is in serious need of higher levels of religious literacy. The potential for misunderstanding, stereotyping and oversimplification based on ignorance is huge – and schools have a big part to play in putting this right.
Jahangir Mohammed argues that the government’s counter extremism measures are having a chilling effect on the Muslim community.
Despite nearly a decade of implementing Prevent and the expenditure of millions of pounds of public money, Sadek Hamid suggests that there is very little evidence to suggest that it has succeeded in its intended outcomes, whilst the current approach focuses on symptoms rather than causes of radicalisation.
STEPHEN H JONES responds to FaithAction’s manifesto for faith-based organisations
To coincide with the publication of the second edition of Grace Davie’s book ‘Religion in Britain’, Tariq Modood offers his reflections on three significant changes to religion over the last few decades that he suggests will characterise the next few decades and perhaps beyond.
TEHMINA KAZI: Women Against Fundamentalism still offer a blueprint that today’s activists would do well to follow.
In this article, Dr Edward Kessler, Vice-Chair and Convenor of the Commission on Religion and Belief in British Public Life reflects on Public Spirit’s recent series of articles on the Commission. Arguing that religion and belief is not taken for granted, he suggests we need a nuanced approach to understanding the role of religion and belief in British public life.
Looking at the role of Black Majority Churches in tackling debt and poverty among marginalised communities, Reddie argues there has been a ‘step-change’ in Black socio-political engagement – particularly manifested in the Black Church Manifesto, which seeks to move beyond offering ‘tea and sympathy’.
Shenaz Bunglawala calls for the Commission to deliberate the disparity in legislative protections for groups defined by race and those defined by religion and the inevitable retort of some who claim that religion, as a ‘chosen’ trait does not merit or deserve the legal treatment prescribed to ascriptive traits.