Political Diaconia in a New Multicultural and More Hidden Europe. Why Dignity is Only Fulfilled through Religion
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This essay examines the ethical-political role of diaconia that is bound up in the way ethnic-resurgence is framed in the sociology of Dominique Schapper . In the essay I support Schnapper. She has conceded to diaconia and the minorities a historic role in forming ideas of democratization. In my own formulation, her position of “civic republicanism” contrasts with the position of cosmopolitan diaconia in a way that engenders new ideas of how to think of diaconia in the new Europe. My contention is that political diaconia generates a social influence in the sense that it is paradoxically both political and apolitical, and sometimes anti-political, in that it defends dignity through practicing goodness as its own distinct entity. Dignity can only be fulfilled through religion. An indispensable role for diaconia in the new Europe is to mediate the voices of various ethnicities and religions. This understanding also renders diaconia a multicultural position. Diaconia is cosmopolitan and therefore inter-religious and inter-ethnic at the same time. It is pluralistic in its essence.
4th Biennial Conference for Research in Diaconia and Christian Social Practice. Hidden Europe: The Challenge to Diaconia and Christian Social Practice. Praha 26.09.12 - 29.09.12