Does Human Rights Need God?

By Elizabeth M. Bucar; Barbra Barnett | Go to book overview

Preface

This book began, under the auspices of the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life, as a lecture series at the University of Chicago during 2002 to 2003, entitled “Does Human Rights Need God?” Several contributors traveled to the University of Chicago, from as far away as South Africa, to deliver public addresses, in addition to providing essays for the book. We are particularly grateful for their willingness to engage with our university community. We also thank Mieke Holkeboer for her early work in conceptualizing and organizing the lecture series.

Given the importance of each of our contributors’ respective activities in striving toward a world community in which humans are protected from fundamental violations, we greatly appreciate their willingness to reflect on our organizing question, and to provide us with the thoughtful, well-crafted, provocative essays that follow.

Hannah Timmermans’ keen editing skills on behalf of Eerdmans have been much appreciated. John Carlson, who went above and beyond the call of duty of a series editor, provided invaluable advice, encouragement, and substantive feedback. We particularly thank Jean Bethke Elshtain, who made this project possible and guided us to its fruition. She is extraordinarily generous in facilitating opportunities for the professional development of young scholars and continues to be a valued mentor.

Finally, we would like to thank our families and friends for their encouragement and guidance, especially Alexis Zubrow and Emilie Barnett — our most dedicated, and patient, supporters.

-ix-

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