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The Problem of Religious DiversityEuropean Challenges, Asian Approaches$
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Anna Triandafyllidou and Tariq Modood

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9781474419086

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: May 2018

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9781474419086.001.0001

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Multiculturalism and Moderate Secularism1

Multiculturalism and Moderate Secularism1

(p.52) 3 Multiculturalism and Moderate Secularism1
The Problem of Religious Diversity

Tariq Modood

Edinburgh University Press

The ‘post-secular’ or a ‘crisis of secularism’ is, in Western Europe, crucially to do with the reality of multiculturalism. Not just the fact of new ethno-religious diversity but the presence of a multiculturalist approach to this diversity, namely: the idea that equality must be extended from uniformity of treatment to include respect for difference; recognition of public/private interdependence; recognition and institutional accommodation of minorities; reversal of marginalisation and a remaking of national citizenship so that all can have a sense of belonging to it. Equality requires that this ethno-cultural multiculturalism should be extended to include state-religion connexions in Western Europe, which I characterise as ‘moderate secularism’, based on the idea that political authority should not be subordinated to religious authority yet religion can be a public good which the state should assist in realising or utilising. I discuss here three multiculturalist approaches that contend this multiculturalising of moderate secularism is not the way forward. One excludes religious groups and secularism from the scope of multiculturalism (Kymlicka); another largely limits itself to opposing the ‘othering’ of groups such as Jews and Muslims (Jansen); and the third argues that moderate secularism is the problem not the solution (Bhargava).

Keywords:   Moderate Secularism, Multiculturalism, Muslims in Western Europe

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