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World of Faith and FreedomWhy International Religious Liberty Is Vital to American National Security$
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Thomas F. Farr

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780195179958

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2009

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195179958.001.0001

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Religion and Stable Self‐Government

Religion and Stable Self‐Government

(p.79) 3 Religion and Stable Self‐Government
World of Faith and Freedom

Thomas F. Farr (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

This chapter examines how a more realistic and historically accurate understanding of religion and democracy can increase the effectiveness of U.S. foreign policy in influencing the natural desire of peoples for freedom. It begins with a discussion of the nature of democracy and what makes it stable and lasting. It asks how and why U.S. diplomacy has ignored the connections between religion and democracy, and how the deficit might be remedied. It surveys America's understanding of religion at the founding and beyond. It describes concepts vital to a refurbishing of American diplomacy in an age of faith: religious pluralism and the free market, the “twin tolerations,” and social and spiritual capital. It analyzes the history of Protestant and Catholic experiences with liberal governance and provides insights into the larger question of how religious societies might accommodate themselves to democracy.

Keywords:   liberal democracy, stability, American founding, pluralism, free market, twin tolerations, social capital, spiritual capital, Protestantism, Catholicism

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