"The Role of Religion in a Changing Landscape" Gruss Law Lecture

Wednesday, April 5, 2017 - 3:00pm
Silverman 147, Penn Law School
This panel discussion is made possible through funds endowed by Joseph S. Gruss and the Gruss Endowment, and is co-sponsored by the Matz Institute at Hebrew University Law School. REGISTER HERE

The discussion will be followed by a brief reception. Dietary laws will be observed.

A seismic shift in the American political and legal landscape has engendered profound uncertainty for many social actors, including the religiously faithful. Religion’s rapidly changing role in the public square both poses challenges and presents opportunities. Recent controversial orders issued by the Trump Administration, for instance, have escalated tensions with Muslim Americans and other concerned religious communities. At the same time, some religious groups feel emboldened, anticipating increased levels of government support for their agenda. Religious groups on all sides of the spectrum seem to be more visible and vocal, and are arguably playing a larger public role. Changes will also transpire in the legal arena, with the appointment (and possible confirmation) of Judge Gorsuch. A reconfigured Court will address highly contentious issues at the heart of the culture war involving the scope of religious liberties (especially when the burdens fall on third parties), the legality of restrictions on abortions, and the nature of LGBT rights. The entrenched and unresolved arguments last term in
 Zubik (remanded for reconsideration), and the pending case of Trinity Lutheran Church, are two immediate foci of these debates.

In light of these imminent changes and daunting challenges, we are convening a select group of distinguished scholars to Penn Law for a panel on April 5, 2017, to examine “The Role of Religion in a Changing Landscape,” from a range of perspectives.

Sarah Barringer Gordon (Penn Law School, Professor of Law and History)

Adnan A. Zulfiqar (Penn Law School, Sharswood Fellow)

Mark R. Silk (Trinity College, Director, Leonard Greenberg Center for the Study of Religion in Public Life)

Leora Batnitzky (Princeton University, Chair, Department of Religion)

David Ellenson (Brandeis University, Director, Schusterman Center for Israel Studies, former President, Hebrew Union College)

Julie E. Cooper (Tel Aviv University, Professor of Political Science, and Katz Center for Advanced Judaic Studies, Fellow)

Moderator: David C. Flatto (Penn Law School, Gruss Professor 2016-2017)

This program has been approved for 1.5 substantive CLE credits for Pennsylvania lawyers. CLE credit may be available in other jurisdictions as well. Attendees seeking CLE credit should bring separate payment in the amount of $60.00 ($30.00 public interest/non-profit attorneys) cash or check made payable to The Trustees of the University of Pennsylvania.



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