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- DescriptionFor nearly two millennia, Western law visited the sins of fathers and mothers upon their illegitimate children, subjecting them to systematic discrimination and deprivation. The graver the sins of their parents, the further these children fell in social standing and legal protection. While some reformers have sought to better the plight of illegitimate children, only in recent decades has illegitimacy lost its full legal sting. Yet the social, ecomic, and psychological costs of illegitimacy still remain high even in the liberal, affluent West. John Witte analyzes and critiques the shifting historical law and theology of illegitimacy. This doctrine, he argues, misinterprets basic biblical teachings on individual accountability and Christian community. It also betrays basic democratic principles of equality, dignity, and natural rights of all. There are illegitimate children, only illegitimate parents, Witte concludes, and he presses for the protection and rights of all children, regardless of their birth status.
- Author BiographyJohn Witte, Jr is Jonas Robitscher Professor of Law and Director of the Center for the Study of Law and Religion at Emory University. His most recent publications include Law and Protestantism: The Legal Teachings of the Lutheran Reformation (2002), The Reformation of Rights: Law, Religion and Human Rights in Early Modern Calvinism (2007), and Christianity and Law: An Introduction (2008) co-edited by Frank S. Alexander.
- Author(s)John Witte
- PublisherCambridge University Press
- Date of Publication19/03/2009
- SubjectReligion: Comparative, General & Reference
- Place of PublicationCambridge
- Country of PublicationUnited Kingdom
- ImprintCambridge University Press
- Content Note9 b/w illus.
- Weight430 g
- Width138 mm
- Height216 mm
- Spine14 mm
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