Ralph Miliband Programme ‘Nations and Borders’ lecture series
Date: Monday 10 March 2014
Venue: Sheikh Zayed Theatre, New Academic Building
Speaker: Professor Rajeev Bhargava
It is widely recognized that political secularism virtually everywhere in the world is in crisis. It is also acknowledged that to overcome this crisis, secularism needs to be reimagined and reconceptualised.
In this lecture Rajeev Bhargava takes the first steps towards this. He argues that we need to move away from the standard church-state models of secularism and begin to focus instead on secularism as a response to deep religious diversity. He claims that diversity must be understood as enmeshed in power relations and therefore the hidden potential of religion related domination must be explicitly acknowledged. These two moves enable us to view secularism as a response to two forms of institutionalised religious domination; inter-religious and intra-religious.
This way of conceiving secularism rebukes the charge that secularism is intrinsically anti-religious. Secularism is not against religion; it opposes institutionalised religious domination. Finally, Professor Bhargava argues that this conception entails that a secular state shows critical respect to all religious and philosophical worldviews, possible only when it adopts a policy of principled distance towards all of them.
Rajeev Bhargava (@Rajeev_Bhargava) is the director at the Centre for the Study of Developing Societies (CSDS), Delhi. Previously, he was a professor at the Centre for Political Studies at Jawaharlal Nehru University and was the head of the department of political science at the University of Delhi. In 2006 he held the Asia Chair at Sciences Po. His publications include Individualism in Social Science, What is Political Theory and Why Do We Need It? and The Promise of India’s Secular Democracy.
Suggested hashtag for this event for Twitter users: #LSEsecularism
This event is free and open to all with no ticket required. Entry is on a first come, first served basis. For any queries email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 020 7955 6043.
A podcast of this event is available to download from Rethinking Secularism: respect, domination and the state
Podcasts and videos of many LSE events can be found at the LSE Public Lectures and Events: podcasts and videos channel.
Twitter and Facebook
You can get immediate notification on the availability of an event podcast by following LSE public lectures and events on Twitter, which will also inform you about the posting of transcripts and videos, the announcement of new events and other important event updates. Event updates and other information about what's happening at LSE can be found on the LSE's Facebook page.
This event has been certified for CPD purposes by the Continuing Professional Development Certification Service. Self-Assessment Record forms will be made available for delegates wishing to record further learning and knowledge enhancement for Continuing Personal and Professional Development (CPD) purposes. For delegates who wish to obtain a CPD Certificate of Attendance, it is the responsibility of delegates to register their details with a LSE steward at the end of the event and email a completed scanned copy of their Self-Assessment Record form to email@example.com within 28 days of the date of the event attended. If a delegate fails to register their details at the event and email a scanned copy of their completed Self-Assessment Record form within 28 days, it will not prove possible to issue a certificate. Certificates of attendance will be emailed out within 10 working days of the Self-Assessment form being received.