University of Notre Dame Law School
As President Clinton observed, "religious freedom is . . . our first freedom." It was central to the Founders' vision for the American political community. They did not always agree about what religious freedom means or requires, but they knew that it matters, and that it should be respected in policy and protected by law. James Madison, the Father of our Constitution, hoped that America's religious-liberty experiment promised a lustre to our country. This lecture will take stock of this experiment and consider the rights of religious believers and institutions and their roles and voices in American public life today.
Co-sponsored by the Catholic Lawyers Guild
Richard W. Garnett is the Paul J. Schierl/Fort Howard Corporation Professor of Law and Concurrent Professor of Political Science at the University of Notre Dame. He is a leading authority on questions and debates regarding the role of religious believers and beliefs in politics and society. He has published widely on these matters, is the author of dozens of law-review articles, book chapters, and he contributes to several law-related blogs, including Mirror of Justice and PrawfsBlawg. His current research project, Two There Are: Understanding the Separation of Church and State, will be published by Cambridge University Press.