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Political Studies Speaker Series: "Liberalism, Prejudice or Religiosity?" - Luc Turgeon

Thursday, November 7, 2019
2:30 PM – 4:00 PM
Mackintosh-Corry Hall
Room: D216
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Liberalism, Prejudice or Religiosity? Understanding Attitudes toward Minority Religious Symbols in Quebec

To explain Quebecers’ support for restrictions on minority religious symbols in the public sphere, commentators have stressed interpretations ranging from Quebec’s fraught history with the Catholic Church to xenophobia. However, efforts to account for support for restrictions on minority religious symbols rarely mention liberalism, despite the fact that proponents of restrictions on the wearing of religious symbols in public institutions in Quebec have often framed their support in the language of liberalism, with references to “gender equality”, “state neutrality” and “freedom of conscience”. In this presentation, drawing on data from the Provincial Diversity Project, we test the hypothesis that holding liberal values has different attitudinal consequences in Quebec than in the rest of Canada and that such distinct consequences explain why Quebecers are more supportive of restrictions on minority religious symbols. 

Luc Turgeon is Associate Professor in the School of Political Studies at the University of Ottawa. His research focuses on attitudes toward immigration and religious diversity, the bureaucratic representation of minorities and the politics of multinational states.

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