Divine democracy: political theology after Carl Schmitt (2020)
in: Oxford scholarship online
Why has religion become such a politically contested issue in the late 20th century? In liberal democracies the state is meant to be neutral towards religious beliefs and rituals of its citizens; the legal system is supposed to decide about guilt or innocence without religious prejudice. Political theology is a discourse developed during the 20th century that questions these widely held assumptions. It studies how political and legal concepts were derived from theological ones, dissolving the connection between the public sphere and secularism, and bringing religion out from the private sphere and into democratic life. This text examines to what extent contemporary democracy rests on theological assumptions.