Citations (2)



Religious Purpose, Inerrancy, and the Establishment Clause

Daniel O. Conkle

Indiana University Maurer School of Law

Indiana Law Journal, Vol. 67, p. 1, 1991
Indiana Legal Studies Research Paper

According to the much-contested "purpose" requirement of the Supreme Court's Establishment Clause doctrine, laws must be grounded on secular as opposed to religious purposes. This article advances a normative argument concerning how this requirement should be construed. The author distinguishes between different types of religious purposes and different types of religious beliefs. Most importantly, he distinguishes between "inerrant" religious beliefs, which are characterized by a certain type of closed-mindedness, and "dialogic" religious beliefs, which are not. After developing a suggested analytical framework, the author applies his approach to the issues of school prayer, evolution, and abortion. He then confront various objections that might be made to his argument, including the claim that all religious beliefs must he treated alike.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 24

Keywords: Constitutional Law, Establishment Clause, Religion and Politics, Religious Liberty

JEL Classification: K00, K10, K19, K30, K39

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Date posted: June 26, 2006  

Suggested Citation

Conkle, Daniel O., Religious Purpose, Inerrancy, and the Establishment Clause. Indiana Law Journal, Vol. 67, p. 1, 1991; Indiana Legal Studies Research Paper. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=911652

Contact Information

Daniel O. Conkle (Contact Author)
Indiana University Maurer School of Law ( email )
211 S. Indiana Avenue
Bloomington, IN 47405
United States
(812) 855-4331 (Phone)
(812) 855-0555 (Fax)
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