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Magna Carta, Religion and the Rule of Law


Robin Griffith-Jones, Mark Hill QC, Lord Judge of Draycote, John W. Baldwin, Margaret McGlynn, R. H. Helmholz, Sir John Baker QC, John Witte, Jr, David Little, Wael Hallaq, Ali Gomaa, Anver Emon, Sudipta Kaviraj, Norman Doe, Maleiha Malik, Sir Rabinder Singh, Javier Martínez-Torrón, Lord Sacks, Simon Lee, Lord Dyson
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  • Date Published: April 2015
  • availability: Available
  • format: Hardback
  • isbn: 9781107100190

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About the Authors
  • Archbishop Stephen Langton hoped with Magna Carta to realise an Old Testament, covenantal kingship in England. At the Charter's 800th anniversary, distinguished jurists, theologians and historians from five faith-traditions and three continents ask how Magna Carta's biblical foundations have mattered and still matter now. A Lord Chief Justice, a Chief Rabbi, a Grand Mufti of Egypt, specialists in eight centuries of law, scholars and advocates committed to the rule of law and to the place of religion in public life all come together in this testimony to Magna Carta's iconic power. We follow the Charter's story in the religious life of the UK, America and now Continental Europe, and reflections on religio-legal traditions far from the Common Law enrich the story. Magna Carta, Religion and the Rule of Law invites all religions to ask what contribution they themselves should make to the rule of law in today's secular, democratic polities.

    • Directly addresses Magna Carta and religion via original scholarship of benefit to religious believers with even a tangential interest in law and history and to lawyers with any professional or personal concern for religion
    • Individual specialist chapters from highly acclaimed scholars provide detailed historical studies which together form a cumulative narrative surpassing the sum of its parts
    • Rich treatment of Judaism, Islam and Hindu-majority India introduces readers to the principles and priorities of other systems
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    Reviews & endorsements

    'Robin Griffith-Jones and Mark Hill QC have assembled a magisterial line-up of thinkers to tease out critical issues around law and religion. Magna Carta, Religion and the Rule of Law is an important book bringing substantial intellectual resources to bear on a key subject for our time; it deserves thoughtful, questioning reading.' Justin Welby, Archbishop of Canterbury

    'This book brings together notable thinkers from a range of disciplines, focusing their thoughts on a topic that is of the moment in many ways … it represents great value … a useful introduction to areas as diverse as thirteenth-century English church history, Islamic concepts of justice, and the tracing of Judao-Christian thought through our social discourse and legal systems.' Stephen Farrell, Search

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    Product details

    • Date Published: April 2015
    • format: Hardback
    • isbn: 9781107100190
    • length: 434 pages
    • dimensions: 229 x 24 x 152 mm
    • weight: 0.75kg
    • contains: 2 b/w illus.
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    Part I. Introduction:
    1. The relevance and resonance of the Great Charter of 1215 for religions today Robin Griffith-Jones and Mark Hill QC
    2. Magna Carta Lord Judge of Draycote
    Part II. The Birth of Magna Carta and the Spread of its Principles:
    3. Due process in Magna Carta: its sources in English law, canon law and Stephen Langton John W. Baldwin
    4. From Charter to common law: the rights and liberties of the pre-Reformation Church Margaret McGlynn
    5. Magna Carta and the law of nations R. H. Helmholz
    6. Magna Carta and personal liberty Sir John Baker QC
    7. Towards a new Magna Carta for early modern England John Witte, Jr
    8. Differences over the foundation of law in seventeenth- and eighteenth-century America David Little
    Part III. Comparative Religious Approaches to Magna Carta's Rule of Law:
    9. Quranic Magna Carta: on the origins of the rule of law in Islam Wael Hallaq
    10. Justice in Islamic legislation Ali Gomaa
    11. Sharia and the rule of law: preserving the realm Anver Emon
    12. Democracy and the power of religion: some lessons from India Sudipta Kaviraj
    13. The still small voice of Magna Carta in Christian law today Norman Doe
    14. Magna Carta, rule of law and religious diversity Maleiha Malik
    Part IV. The Contemporary Inheritance of Magna Carta:
    15. The development of human rights thought from Magna Carta to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights Sir Rabinder Singh
    16. Strasbourg's approach to religion in the pluralist democracies of Europe Javier Martínez-Torrón
    17. The Great Covenant of Liberties: Biblical principles and Magna Carta Lord Sacks
    18. The cardinal rule of religion and the rule of law: a musing on Magna Carta Simon Lee
    19. Strengthened by the rule of law: the message of Magna Carta for religions today Lord Dyson
    Appendix: the charters in translation.

  • Editors

    Robin Griffith-Jones, Temple Church and King's College London
    Robin Griffith-Jones is the Reverend and Valiant Master of the Temple Church at the Temple, London and Senior Lecturer in Theology at King's College London.

    Mark Hill, QC, Cardiff University
    Mark Hill QC is the UK's leading practitioner in the field of law and religion. He also teaches at Cardiff University's Centre for Law and Religion and as an Extraordinary Professor at the University of Pretoria, South Africa.


    Robin Griffith-Jones, Mark Hill QC, Lord Judge of Draycote, John W. Baldwin, Margaret McGlynn, R. H. Helmholz, Sir John Baker QC, John Witte, Jr, David Little, Wael Hallaq, Ali Gomaa, Anver Emon, Sudipta Kaviraj, Norman Doe, Maleiha Malik, Sir Rabinder Singh, Javier Martínez-Torrón, Lord Sacks, Simon Lee, Lord Dyson

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