By Maurizio Viroli

Religion and liberty are frequently considered mutual enemies: if faith has a traditional best friend, it really is authoritarianism--not republicanism or democracy. yet during this publication, Maurizio Viroli, a number one historian of republican political proposal, demanding situations this traditional knowledge. He argues that political emancipation and the safeguard of political liberty have continually required the self-sacrifice of individuals with spiritual sentiments and a spiritual devotion to liberty. this is often really the case while liberty is threatened through authoritarianism: the staunchest defenders of liberty are those that consider a deeply spiritual dedication to it.

Viroli makes his case through reconstructing, for the 1st time, the heritage of the Italian "religion of liberty," masking its whole span yet concentrating on 3 key examples of political emancipation: the unfastened republics of the past due heart a while, the Risorgimento of the 19th century, and the antifascist Resistenza of the 20 th century. In each one instance, Viroli indicates, a spiritual spirit that appeared ethical and political liberty because the maximum items of human existence used to be basic to setting up and holding liberty. He additionally exhibits that after this non secular sentiment has been corrupted or suffocated, Italians have misplaced their liberty.

This publication makes a strong and provocative contribution to modern-day debates in regards to the compatibility of faith and republicanism.

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As If God Existed: Religion and Liberty in the History of Italy by Maurizio Viroli


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