Religion, Culture, and the State: Reflections on the Bouchard-Taylor Report

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Howard Adelman, Pierre Anctil
University of Toronto Press, Apr 9, 2011 - Religion - 160 pages

The Canadian principle of reasonable accommodation demands that the cultural majority make certain concessions to the needs of minority groups if these concessions will not cause 'undue hardship.' This principle has caused much debate in Quebec, particularly over issues of language, Muslim head coverings, and religious symbols such as the kirpan (traditional Sikh dagger). In 2007, Quebec Premier Jean Charest commissioned historian and sociologist Gérard Bouchard and philosopher and political scientist Charles Taylor to co-chair a commission that would investigate the limits of reasonable accommodation in that province.

Religion, Culture, and the State addresses reasonable accommodation from legal, political, and anthropological perspectives. Using the 2008 Bouchard-Taylor Report as their point of departure, the contributors contextualize the English and French Canadian experiences of multiculturalism and diversity through socio-historical analysis, political philosophy, and practical comparisons to other jurisdictions. Timely and engaging, Religion, Culture, and the State is a valuable resource in the discussion of religious pluralism in Canadian society.


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A Mechanism for Managing Diversity or a Source of Tension?
2 Monoculturalism versus Interculturalism in a Multicultural World
3 The BouchardTaylor Commission and the Jewish Community of Québec in Historical Perspective
4 Qui est nous? Some Answers from the BouchardTaylor Commissions Archive
5 The BT Report Open Secularism Model and the Supreme Court of Canada Decisions on Freedom of Religion and Religious Accommodation
Religion Culture and the State

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About the author (2011)

Howard Adelman is a professor emeritus at York University.

Pierre Anctil is a professor in the Department of History at the University of Ottawa.

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