A New Direction in Law and Religion

Welcome to Canopy Forum! Law and religion are two of the most complex and pervasive forces in human history.  These two “different but interrelated … dimensions of social experience” continue to shape the lives of individuals and communities around the world. The mission of Canopy Forum is to foster deeper understandings of law, religion, and

“What’s the Story with the First U.S. Court Case on Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting?” by Kristina Arriaga

United States v. Nagarwala should have marked the beginning of the end for female genital mutilation/cutting (FGM/C) in the United States. Instead, after two contentious years in court, the case unraveled when a federal judge dismissed most of the charges against the defendants. In his 28-page ruling, District Judge Bernard A. Friedman ruled that Congress had exceeded its

“Moral Leadership: A Vocation For the Next Generation” by Robert M. Franklin

“Spiritual, but not religious” summarizes the religious orientation of many younger Americans.  For years, those who care about theological education have puzzled over the declining interest by new college graduates in parish ministry and pastoral leadership. It has been a time of disruption and heartburn.  If future generations are likely to be less interested in

“America First, Border Walls, and Muslim Bans: A Place Based Approach to National Identity” by Adam McDuffie

The surge of white nationalist and anti-immigrant rhetoric during the Trump presidency can be explained through a “place-based” analysis. The reification of American identity by bolstering borders and restricting the means of legitimate entry is a result of changing notions of what constitutes the American “space” in an era of increasing globalization.

“Our Non-Christian Nation: How Atheists, Satanists, Wiccans and Others are Demanding their Place in American Public Life” by Jay Wexler

In the past two decades, the Supreme Court has largely torn down the wall separating church and state, allowing Christians to display monuments on public property, apply for public funds, and pray before town meetings. In this talk, Wexler describes how religious minorities, including atheists, have been demanding to take part in public life alongside Christians and argues that this is a trend that should be celebrated and continued.