2018 Symposium on Religious Pluralism and Democracy

2018 Symposium on Religious Pluralism and Democracy

About the Symposium

Religious diversity is at the heart of ethical debates surrounding democratic culture, peace, and civil society. We live in a world in which religious pluralism is deeply contested. The escalation of violence against religious minorities threatens to undermine core democratic values of tolerance, respect for difference, and interfaith dialogue. This interdisciplinary symposium will engage the intersection of religious diversity and democracy from historical, legal, ethical, and peacebuilding perspectives.

All events will take place in the UVU Classroom Building, Room 511
For more information, contact Brian Birch at brian.birch@uvu.edu 


Thursday, March 29th


10:00 - 11:15 a.m.

"Religious Toleration & Diversity: Framing a History"

Evan Haefeli, Associate Professor of History, Texas A&M University 

11:30 - 12:45 p.m.

"Joseph Smith's Religious Liberty, and Ours"

Benjamin Park, Assistant Professor of History, Sam Houston State University 

2:30 - 3:45 p.m.

"Towards an Empathetic Politics: Structural Injustice, Democratic Practices and Development of the Egalitarian Personality"

Carol Gould, Distinguished Professor of Philosophy, Hunter College & Graduate Center

Director, Center for Global Ethics & Politics, City University of New York 

4:30 - 5:15 p.m.

Panel Discussion


Friday, March 30th


10:00 - 10:50 a.m.

"American Civil Religion and Structural Violence"

Richard Rubenstein, Professor of Conflict Resolution and Public Affairs, George Mason University 

11:00 - 11:50 a.m.

"Was the Constitution the Problem? The Politics of Religious Intolerance in Nineteenth-Century America"

Spencer W. McBride, Historian, Joseph Smith Papers Project 

12:00 - 12:50 p.m.

"Religion with Walls: Persecution Narratives as a Challenge to Pluralism"

Julie Ingersoll, Professor of Religious Studies, University of North Florida 

1:00 - 1:50 p.m.

Brownbag Panel Discussion 

2:00 - 3:30 p.m.

Student Workshop