Faith and Law: How Religious Traditions from Calvinism to Islam View American Law
Robert F. Cochran
NYU Press, 2008 - Law - 299 pages
The relationship between religion and the law is a hot-button topic in America, with the courts, Congress, journalists, and others engaging in animated debates on what influence, if any, the former should have on the latter. Many of these discussions are dominated by the legal perspective, which views religion as a threat to the law; it is rare to hear how various religions in America view American law, even though most religions have distinct views on law.
In Faith and Law, legal scholars from sixteen different religious traditions contend that religious discourse has an important function in the making, practice, and adjudication of American law, not least because our laws rest upon a framework of religious values. The book includes faiths that have traditionally had an impact on American law, as well as new immigrant faiths that are likely to have a growing influence. Each contributor describes how his or her tradition views law and addresses one legal issue from that perspective. Topics include abortion, gay rights, euthanasia, immigrant rights, and blasphemy and free speech.