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Nussbaum, Martha C. . LIBERTY OF CONSCIENCE: IN DEFENSE OF AMERICA'S TRADITION OF RELIGIOUS EQUALITY. New York City, NY: Basic Books, 2008. Hardcover. First Edition/First Printing. 406 pages. As New/As New.

The author's account on subject. Now considered a contemporary classic. The First Hardcover Edition. Precedes and should not be confused with all other subsequent editions. An absorbing, thoughtful, and brilliant history of the religion clauses of the First Amendment, Martha Nussbaum "makes a strong, thorough-going case for America as a haven of religious liberty for believers of all faiths. Beginning with an illuminating rehabilitation of Rhode Island Founder Roger Williams as America's earliest defender of religious equality, Nussbaum continues by examining how Williams' ideals have been both upheld and abandoned throughout the nation's history. Nussbaum comments at length on how these fairly general, vague clauses have been fleshed out by more than two centuries of case law. Refreshingly, Nussbaum does not add to the acrimonious cacophony around the idea of separation of Church and State. Rather than pushing for strict separation, she argues for what philosopher John Rawls calls overlapping consensus, which echoes Williams' belief that citizens who differ greatly on matters of ultimate meaning can still agree to respect each other's liberty of conscience" (Publishers Weekly). As always, Nussbaum writes beautifully. Her critiques of the opinions written by Justices Antonin Scalia and Clarence Thomas, two of the book's arch-nemeses, are sharp, but unlike most virulent attacks on the two Justices, she does not go berserk. Nussbaum painstakingly demonstrates the inherent and deeply flawed contradictions between their "originalist" interpretation of the Constitution and the dangers of making America a "Christian Nation" instead of the unique congregation of various religious beliefs it has always been. A "must-have" title for Martha Nussbaum collectors. This copy is very prominently and beautifully signed in black pen on the title page by Martha Nussbaum. This title is now highly collectible. This is the only signed copy of the First Hardcover Edition available online and has no flaws, a pristine beauty. A rare signed copy thus. One of the greatest living philosophers. A flawless copy. (SEE ALSO OTHER MARTHA NUSSBAUM TITLES IN OUR CATALOG). ISBN 0465051642. $100.00

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