Philosophy and Social Criticism 39 (7):637-673 (2013)

Javier Aguirre
Universidad Industrial de Santander
This article is meant as a response to Cristina Lafont’s critiques of Habermas’ view of religion’s role in the public sphere. For Lafont, the burdens that Habermas places on secular citizens, by requiring them to avoid secularism, may entail dangerous consequences for a correct understanding of the concept of deliberative democracy. For this reason, she presents a proposal of her own in which no citizen, whether religious or secular, has the obligation to engage in a way of thinking alien to his or her own cognitive stance. Although subtle and revealing, Lafont’s critiques face two great problems. On the one hand, she does not discuss Habermas’ thoughts on the nature and value of religion, and, on the other, she overestimates sincerity as an element of an ethics of citizenship. I have divided my text in three sections. First, I will present Lafont’s criticism on Habermas’ proposal. For presenting Lafont’s objections I will use and expand an example mentioned by Lafont herself, namely, a political public debate about same-sex marriage. Second, I will answer Lafont’s objections, and finally, I will offer some conclusions regarding the philosophical bases on which Habermas’ account rests.
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DOI 10.1177/0191453713491264
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References found in this work BETA

Religion in the Public Sphere.Jurgen Habermas - 2006 - European Journal of Philosophy 14 (1):1–25.
Religion in the Public Sphere.Jurgen Habermas - 2006 - European Journal of Philosophy 14 (1):1-25.

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