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Minority religions, litigation, and the prevention of harm

Ezzy, D ORCID: 0000-0002-5078-2288 2018 , 'Minority religions, litigation, and the prevention of harm' , Journal of Contemporary Religion, vol. 33, no. 2 , pp. 277-289 , doi:

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Religious anti-discrimination legislation institutionalises non-violentways of living with radical difference associated with religious diversity.The need to govern the growing number of conflicts generated byincreasingly pluralistic societies is a major reason governments haveintroduced a range of new laws relating to religion. These laws areimportant not only because they protect human rights, which they do,but also because they shape social processes that generate extremeharms such as mass murder and the sexual abuse of minors. A detailedexamination of three case studies of minority religions illustrates thisargument. The histories of the Fundamentalist Latter Day Saints andThe Family demonstrate that the socio-cultural processes that resultin sexual abuse in minority religions are similar to the processesthat result in extreme violence and that litigation plays a key role inpreventing the escalation of these processes, although it is of a posthoc nature. The case of the Ordo Templi Orientis demonstrates thatreligious anti-discrimination legislation proactively disrupts the socioculturalprocesses that lead to the escalation of tension that resultsin serious forms of harm.

Item Type: Article
Authors/Creators:Ezzy, D
Keywords: Minority Religion, Anti-discriminatino legislation, sociology
Journal or Publication Title: Journal of Contemporary Religion
Publisher: Routledge
ISSN: 1353-7903
DOI / ID Number:
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© 2018 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group

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