This book analyzes the place and influence of religion in European politics. François Foret presents the first data ever collected on the religious beliefs of European decision makers and what they do with these beliefs. Discussing popular assumptions such as the return of religion, aggressive European secularism, and religious lobbying, Foret offers objective data and non-normative conceptual frameworks to clarify some major issues in the contemporary political debate.
- Utilizes a new data set, which includes results from the first ever survey on the religious beliefs of European political elites
- Provides an empirically grounded view on a topic dominated by the clash of normative views
- Offers a multilevel (from the national to the supranational) and multidimensional (political, legal, cultural, and social) analysis to tackle the complexity of the interactions between religion and politics
Table of Contents
1. Religion in the framing of a European polity
2. Religion in the selection of European rulers: is the EU Christian democratic, secularist, or neutral?
3. Religion in the European electoral process: more than a trace, less than a path
4. Religion and political socialization in Brussels
5. Religion and public action in the EU
6. Legitimization of the EU: meeting religion in the public sphere
7. Religion in the external identity of the EU
Appendix: presentation of the survey 'relep': method, sample, range, and limits of the data.