Religious Liberty: Overviews and History - Vol. 1

Religious Liberty: Overviews and History - Vol. 1

Religious Liberty: Overviews and History - Vol. 1

Religious Liberty: Overviews and History - Vol. 1

Synopsis

One of the most respected and influential scholars of religious liberty in our time, Douglas Laycock has argued many crucial religious liberty cases in the U.S. appellate courts and Supreme Court. His noteworthy scholarly and popular writings are being collected in four comprehensive volumes under the title Religious Liberty. This first volume gives the big picture of religious liberty in the United States, fitting a vast range of disparate disputes into a coherent pattern - from public school prayers to private school vouchers to regulation of churches and believers. Laycock's clear overviews provide the broad, historical, helpful context often lacking in today's press.

Excerpt

It is a special privilege for the Emory University Studies in Law and Religion Series to publish the collected writings of Douglas Laycock on religious liberty. Professor Laycock has been one of the world’s leading scholars of religious liberty for the past three decades and has written briefs and argued in a number of Supreme Court and Court of Appeals cases. He has crafted federal and state legislation on religious liberty, testified before countless Congressional committees, and appeared regularly in televised and print media. He has stood at distinguished lecterns throughout North America, including two memorable keynote appearances at Emory Law School. Currently the Yale Kamisar Professor of Law at the University of Michigan Law School, he was formerly chaired professor of law at the University of Texas at Austin and before that professor of law at the University of Chicago Law School.

It is his work as a scholar of religious liberty, however, that has set Professor Laycock apart from virtually every other person now working in the field of religious liberty. Laycock’s work has shaped a number of major religious liberty doctrines in America. Building on the writings of Paul Kauper and Arlin Adams, for example, he developed the concept of “church autonomy” in a path-breaking 1981 article in the Columbia Law Review. the phrase is now commonly used, as he advocated, to describe a church’s right to manage its own internal affairs, as distinguished from the right of a church or believer to refrain from violating their religious teachings. This understanding is also now common currency in European jurisprudence of “religious autonomy.” He wrote a path-breaking article on “non-preferential aid” in the 1986 William & Mary Law Review that exposed a number of the false historical claims being pressed by judges and jurists alike in their attempts to weaken the First Amendment Establishment clause. He helped create the idea of equal access . . .

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