Monday 5 November 2012

ECHR Articles in the Modern Law Review

The newest issue of the Modern Law Review (vol. 75, issue 6)  includes two articles on the European Convention of Human Rights. The first is an article written by Ian Leigh and Rex Ahdar entitled 'Post-Secularism and the European Court of Human Rights: Or How God Never Really Went Away'. This is the abstract:
This article analyses the critical yet elusive notions of state neutrality, secularism and religious coercion under the European Convention in light of the European Court of Human Rights recent decision in Lautsi v Italy. We contend that the real concern in the Italian crucifix case was not the infringement of the school pupils‘ religious freedom nor the proselytising or coercive effect of the 'passive‘ religious symbols. Rather, opponents of the longstanding symbols were animated by desire for strict religious equality, a notion that is, correctly in our view, not guaranteed under the Convention. Lautsi has significantly cleared the conceptual undergrowth surrounding state neutrality and the varieties of secularism, reined in the elastic notion of religious coercion and eschewed attempts to squeeze the constitutional diversity of European religion-state frameworks into a strict American-style separationist mould. The Convention jurisprudence on freedom of religion has finally come of age.

The second is a case commentary written by Paul Johnson entitled 'Adoption, Homosexuality and the European Convention on Human Rights: Gas and Dubois v France'. This is the abstract:

On 15 March 2012 the European Court of Human Rights (the Court) issued its first judgment addressing the differential treatment of same-sex and opposite-sex couples in respect of the adoption of a child. The Court held that excluding same-sex couples in civil partnerships, who have no legal right to marry, from adoption provisions available to married opposite-sex couples does not violate rights guaranteed by the European Convention on Human Rights (the Convention). I argue that the Court's reasoning in Gas and Dubois v France is unpersuasive and unsustainable in light of its wider case law.