A European Culture of Religious Tolerance
Title: A European Culture of Religious Tolerance
Author: AUGENSTEIN, Daniel
Publisher: European University Institute
Series/Number: EUI LAW; 2008/04
In the European integration process, the European Union continues to struggle for an identity that can generate widespread support amongst its peoples. In this context it has been suggested by some that the European Union should embrace the Christian values that underpin its national traditions and cultures. I shall argue that, instead of relying on a communitarian vision of a ‘Christian Europe’, a European identity should build on a culture of religious tolerance. A European culture of religious tolerance draws on the enduring of difference and the acknowledgement of persisting and intractable conflict as essential experiences of Europe’s Christian past. Thus understood, tolerance lies at the roots of a European identity. At the same time, and through the conditional inclusion of religious diversity in the European nation-states, a European culture of religious tolerance creates over time new commonalities between Europe’s religiously permeated national traditions. Thus understood, tolerance only brings about the conditions for the development of a genuine European identity that amounts to more than (the sum of) its national counterparts.
Subject: Christianity; European integration; European identity; Locke; tolerance; religion; nation; culture; fundamental/human rights; constitutional law
Type of Access: openAccess