About the Conference
The place of religion in the public square is a perennial question with which democracies must wrestle. Traditionally, these debates imagine the public square as a political forum. But the public square could just as easily be the market and, indeed, many of the recent debates about religion in public life center on commercial actors. For-profit corporations have claimed to practice religion. Religious entrepreneurs have pitted themselves against anti-discrimination laws. Corporations have organized boycotts against states over legislation related to religious freedom or transgender rights. These and similar controversies invite reconsideration of where and how the relationship between religious beliefs and practices and democratic ideals and institutions is being worked out. This conference explores the interaction of faith and commerce, corporations and democracy, and the role of the law in regulating the same.