[csaa-forum] Free Speech and Freedom of Religion - UOW this Thursday 7 April

Tanja Dreher tanjad at uow.edu.au
Mon Apr 4 14:49:16 ACST 2016

This Thursday 7 April there will be two events at The University of Wollongong on the theme of Free Speech and Freedom of Religion - a Roundtable (2.30 - 4.30pm) and the LIRC Public Lecture (5 for 5.30pm)

All Welcome. Please circulate widely.

Roundtable: Free Speech and Religious Freedom after Charlie Hebdo and Section 18C

>From the Fatwah placed on Salman Rushdie to the Danish political cartoons event of 2005 to the fallout from last year?s Charlie Hebdo attacks. Freedom of speech and freedom of religion often come into conflict with one another in the post-911 world. In Australia, in Britain and in Europe, positions derived from cultural difference - Indigenous and diasporic - have repeatedly found themselves under attack by arguments claiming to derive from the liberal ideology of free speech. Liberal political theory appears to be increasingly ill prepared to deal with the incommensurability between the right to free speech and such rights to religious freedom or cultural self-determination that can act as a check on it. Our speakers bring a range of expertise on the topic from legal scholarship to political theory to discourse analysis. The conversation promises to open up new ways to defend cultural difference from the right while maintaining the possibility of freedom beyond the terms of liberalism.

THURSDAY 7 APRIL 2016 - 2.30PM TO 4.30PM LHA RESEARCH HUB (19.2072)
Sponsored by the Centre for Texts, Cultures and Creative Industries (CTC) and the Forum on Human Rights Research (HRR).

LIRC Public Lecture: Freedom of Religion and Freedom of Expression in contemporary multiculture
Lecture by Professor Anshuman Mondal (Brunel University)
Hosted by the Legal Intersections Research Centre (LIRC) at The University of Wollongong

Date:          Thursday 7 April 2016
Time:         5:00pm drinks, Lecture commences at 5:30pm
Location:   LHA Research Hub (19.2072), University of Wollongong
RSVP:         Online<https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1PwIoQuPNoyJNoJlkS6_3lfQCtzVkLvzx8jZoi_jHAwA/viewform> for lecture only

Abstract: Recent freedom of speech controversies involving religious groups have established a widespread public impression that the right to freedom of expression and the right to religious freedom are in tension if not outright opposition. And yet, in every single human rights charter they appear side by side, as successive articles. Is this adjacency coincidental or merely conceptual? This lecture will argue that it is not, that their proximity to one another is historical and, in exploring this history, we can see that the contemporary view that they are in tension is relatively recent. Looking at how the First Amendment of the US Constitution came into being, it is possible to show how, over the course of two centuries, shifts in the understanding of each liberty has profoundly formed and shaped understandings of the other. The lecture will finish with some reflections on the implications of the contemporary view about these liberties and their effects on the inhabitants of multicultural liberal-democracies, especially religious minorities.

Biography:  Anshuman A. Mondal is Professor of English and Postcolonial Studies at Brunel University London, UK. He is the author of four books, including Islam and Controversy: The Politics of Free Speech after Rushdie (Palgrave, 2014) and many essays, journal articles and book chapters on cultural politics, identity, religion and multiculturalism.

Dr Tanja Dreher
ARC Future Fellow
Faculty of Law, Humanities and the Arts
University of Wollongong, NSW 2522, Australia

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