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Document Details :
Title: Religion, Civility, and Conflict
Subtitle: Towards a Concept of 'Critical Civility'
Author(s): FRYDENLUND, Iselin
Journal: Studies in Interreligious Dialogue
Volume: 23 Issue: 1 Date: 2013
Does religion contribute to civility in times of conflict or does it affect it negatively? The debate about religion’s propensity for either peace or conflict can be traced historically, but it largely ignores the fact that religion as a social phenomenon is always constructed in a particular context. Therefore, local level analysis is needed to identify religious practices of civility. Based on material from Rwanda, India, and Sri Lanka, 'critical civility' is suggested as a new term capturing a particular form of civility in times of violence. 'Critical civility' captures a certain combination of tolerance, boundary transcendence, and 'politics of the common good'. This partly overlaps with interreligious dialogue but is to be distinguished from it by denoting a virtue and a form of practice that is less institutionalized than formalized dialogue and by taking on a critical view on social norms that might go against dominant religious discourses.