Abstract

https://ssrn.com/abstract=2694566
 


 



Does Durkheim Enhance Our Understanding of Law and Religion?


Prakash Shah


Queen Mary University of London, School of Law

November 23, 2015

Queen Mary School of Law Legal Studies Research Paper No. 212/2015

Abstract:     
In this paper, I view Durkheim in two ways: in his intellectual context and as a scientist whose claims can be tested independently of that context. Durkheim’s claims on religion demonstrate his Western culturality, which constrains and qualifies those claims and limits their relevance today. His universal claims about religion actually depend on and presuppose core Christian theological themes to make them intelligible and raise questions that are possible only within a cultural context like the Western culture which is constituted by a religion: Christianity. This is made much more obvious when placing Durkheim’s claims against the theory of religion developed by Balagangadhara, whose work shows why the claim of religion as a universal derives from Christian theology, why religions are what the Semitic religions are, and why Asia as a culture has no religion. Balagangadhara’s theory solves problems that Durkheim’s work either does not address itself to or cannot explain and generates important new questions for law and religion studies.

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Date posted: November 23, 2015  

Suggested Citation

Shah, Prakash, Does Durkheim Enhance Our Understanding of Law and Religion? (November 23, 2015). Queen Mary School of Law Legal Studies Research Paper No. 212/2015. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2694566

Contact Information

Prakash Shah (Contact Author)
Queen Mary University of London, School of Law ( email )
Mile End Road
London, London E1 4NS
United Kingdom
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