Comparative Constitutional Law, Democracy, Law and Religion, Public Theology, Religion and Politics, Whither Europe?

Panel on “Human Dignity and Common Good Constitutionalism”

I am delighted to confirm that a panel proposal by Dr. Leonard Taylor and myself on “Human Dignity and Common Good Constitutionalism” has been approved. Dr. Taylor is a Lecturer in Law, Department of Social Sciences, Atlantic Technological University, Ireland, and author of Catholic Cosmopolitanism and Human Rights (Cambridge University Press, 2020).

The panel description reads as follows:

“The classical legal tradition conceives of law as ‘a reasoned ordering to the common good.’ The development of a recent theory described as Common Good Constitutionalism brings to the fore this longstanding tradition within jurisprudence to interrogate contemporary constitutional theory. Our focus is the relationship of Common Good Constitutionalism with the modern discourse around human dignity and religious freedom. We query the trajectory of rights language with a concern for classical constitutional theory, a Thomist conception of justice, and the common good. Our purpose is to allow space for new theorizing about the future of human dignity as established in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights of 1948 in light of this emerging thought on Common Good Constitutionalism. For example, Adrian Vermeule’s forthcoming book Common Good Constitutionalism: Recovering the Classical Legal Tradition (Polity Books) has sought to argue that a more ancient legal tradition can offer resources to constitutional thought and to our understanding of human dignity and religious freedom. This departure point will offer scholars in this panel the opportunity to reimagine human dignity and religious freedom, and clarify how the classical legal tradition might address and provide possibilities for a reasoned return of the classical roots of the political and social order today.”

Our list of distinguished, preliminary co-panelists include:

  1. Professor Adrian Vermeule, the Ralph S. Tyler, Jr. Professor of Constitutional Law, Harvard Law School
  2. Dr. Conor Casey, Lecturer in Law, University of Liverpool School of Law & Social Justice
  3. Imogen Sinclair, Director, New Social Covenant Unit UK
  4. Professor Jose Ignacio Hernandez, Professor of Administrative Law at the Universidad Central de Venezuela, and the Universidad Católica Andrés Bello.
  5. Dr. Ryan Meade, Research Fellow, Blackfriars Hall, Faculty of Law, University of Oxford
  6. Dr. Ricardo Calleja, Lecturer in Business Ethics, IESE Business School – University of Navarra
  7. John Larkin QC, the former attorney general of Northern Ireland

This September, the panel will occur during the International Consortium for Law and Religion Studies conference in Córdoba, Spain.

For the preliminary list of panels, see

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