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CALUMET . intercultural law and humanities review
ISSN 2465-0145 (on-line)
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I partiti religiosi (islamici) e la democrazia “laica”
Stefanì P.
The essay addresses the issue of religious parties, specifically the dissolution of the Turkish Refah Partis, ordered by the Turkish Constitutional Court, and subsequently upheld by the European Court of Human Rights. By legitimizing the decisions of Turkish authorities, European jurisprudence affirms the incompatibility of a party inspired by the values of Islam with (protected) democracy and secularism. In fact, the Refah Partisi case acquires an emblematic value for the relationship between religion and politics in contemporary society because it highlights the limits of “modern” secularism, when faced with religiously-oriented Islamic parties/citizens. This issue has been increasingly visible in the socio-political contexts of European countries which have witnessed, for the last several years, the formation of Islamic parties manifesting strong identity characterization. The Islamic, or Ethnic-Religious Party, is a party of religious identity, and stands out in stark contrast to Christian-Democratic parties because the latter was connoted only by religiously-oriented inspiration. This paper argues that religious identity parties are the direct result of the failure of European multiculturalist policies that were conceived as a response to religious diversity, but disregarded anthropological and cultural diversity. If we are to develop societies capable of managing diversity beyond identity politics, we must put in place intercultural policies that are inclusive, and above all, legal frameworks that are inspired by an understanding of the super-structural element of the subject within its own “religious” culture.
By nurturing the ability for the subject to "reread" itself, to "reconceive" its religious affiliation within the new social context, the feeling of partisanship can grow, resulting in the building of a political identity with a religious basis as a new and significant variant of religious identity tout court.


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