News & Events


Conference To Examine Issues of Church/State Separation

Current issues arising from the political separation of religion and government, one of the central pillars of American democracy, were analyzed at a two-day conference at the University of Virginia School of Law February 15 and 16. Leading national scholars and policymakers convened for Beyond Separation: Church and State, a program of ten seminars probing such matters as the Founding Father's intentions, modern First Amendment interpretation, religious freedom, faith-based initiatives and school vouchers. Sponsored by the U.Va.-based Journal of Law and Politics, the conference talks were open to the public for a registration fee of $60. Final versions of papers will be published by the Journal this summer.

Symposium presenters included University of Chicago law professor Philip Hamburger on contemporary interpretation of the separation principle, Columbia University law professor Kent Greenawalt on teaching about religion in schools, and former executive director of the Baptist Joint Committee Melissa Rogers on how separation protects and fosters religious freedom. Each presentation was followed by comments and discussion from the Virginia law faculty and other prominent experts. Sessions started at 8:45 in the Law School's Slaughter Hall Room 278 and end at 4:30.

For more information, contact Holly MacKay at or Mary Ann McGrail at


February 15, 2002

Separation and Interpretation
Philip Hamburger, University of Chicago Law School
John C. Jeffries, Jr., in response, University of Virginia Law School

Non-sectarianism Reconsidered
Noah Feldman, New York University School of Law
G. Edward White, in response, University of Virginia School of Law

Protecting Religious Liberty:
The False Messiahs of Free Speech Doctrine and Formal Neutrality

Alan E. Brownstein, University of California at Davis School of Law
Martin Lederman, in response, Washington, D.C.

Separation as a Tradition
Steven D. Smith, University of Notre Dame Law School
William Van Alstyne, in response, Duke University Law School

Forgotten But Not Gone: The Ways in Which the Separation Tradition Protects Religion and Fosters Religious Freedom
Melissa Rogers, formerly of the Baptist Joint Committee on Public Affairs
Robert O'Neil, in response, University of Virginia School of Law

February 16, 2002

Teaching of, and Teaching About Religion
Kent Greenawalt, Columbia Law School
Barbara Armacost, in response, University of Virginia School of Law

Power, Religion, and the Rule of Law
Marci A. Hamilton, Cardozo School of Law
Michael Horowitz, in response, The Hudson Institute

The Establishment Clause as a Structural Restraint:
Validations and Ramifications

Carl Esbeck, U.S. Department of Justice
William P. Marshall, in response, University of North Carolina Law School

The Endorsement Test: Its Status and Desirability
Jesse Choper, Boalt Hall Law School University of California-Berkeley
James Ryan, in response, University of Virginia School of Law

Sites of Redemption: A Wide Angle Look at Government Vouchers and Sectarian Service Providers
Ira C. Lupu and Robert Tuttle, George Washington University Law School
Vincent Blasi, in response, University of Virginia and Columbia Law Schools.

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