Books and articles

Medda-Windischer, R., Wonisch, K., Budabin, A. C. (eds.) (2024). Religious Minorities in Pluralist Societies. Critical Perspectives on the Accommodation of Religious Diversities. Leiden: Brill

The accommodation of religious diversity in contemporary pluralist societies is undoubtedly amongst the most salient issues on today’s political agenda, not least due to the challenges posed by migration. A subject of considerable debate is how to create a political community that is cohesive and stable and satisfies the legitimate aspirations of minorities. This volume provides a critical analysis of the institutional accommodations and legal frameworks conceived by and/or for historical religious groups and assesses their potential and shortcomings in providing for an integrated society based on human- and minority rights protection.


Modood, T., Sealy, T. (eds.) (2024), Governing Religious Diversity in Global Comparative Perspective. Abingdon: Routledge

Debates and controversies around the governance of religious diversity have become important features of the social and political landscape in different regions and countries across the world. The historical influences and legacies, and the contemporary circumstances provoking these debates vary between contexts. This book presents comparative analyses of different modes of the governance of religious diversity and state-religion connections and relations in twenty-three countries in five world regions: Western Europe, Southern and South-Eastern Europe, Central and Eastern Europe, the MENA region, and South and Southeast Asia.


Madera, A. & Wonisch, K. (eds.) (2023). The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on religious minorities. International Journal for Religious Freedom, 16(1). Available at  

This special issue explores the diverse challenges and opportunities faced by religious minorities in the context of COVID-19. The COVID-19 pandemic was not only a health emergency; it also affected minorities, especially religious minorities, in various ways. It is an insightful examination of the situation from different angles, and the need to acknowledge that while different religions suffer persecution, the patterns of persecution are similar. 


Marko, J., Lakitsch, M., Weirer, W., Winter, F., & Wonisch K. (eds.) (2022). Religious Diversity, State, and Law: National, Transnational and International Challenges. Leiden: Brill-Nijhoff. Available at

Globalisation, migration, and (de-)secularisation have fundamentally transformed the concepts of religion, state, and law during the last decades. The main goal of this interdisciplinary approach is to clarify the multifaceted theoretical and practical challenges of religious diversity and socio-political pluralism in Europe. In twenty-two chapters, the contributions to this volume revisit basic concepts, structures and institutional settings such as sovereignty; the dogma of the separation of state, church and/or religion; human and minority rights; gender and religion; varieties of fundamentalisms; interreligious dialogue and peacebuilding; and, not least, religious education.



Ferrari, S., Medda-Windischer, R., & Wonisch, K. (eds.) (2021). Religious Minorities in Europe and Beyond: A Critical Appraisal in a Global Perspective. Religions, Special Issue. Available at

The Special Issue is divided into three parts. The first part provides an analytical framework to elucidate the nexus between the politics of sameness and the politics of difference, with a focus on the European context. By analyzing the alleged dichotomy between the two perspectives, the first part of the Special Issue seeks to determine how, as far as Europe is concerned, both approaches can be combined to foster the protection of religious communities and their members and, ultimately, strengthen social cohesion. The second part of the Special Issue extends the geographical scope of analysis beyond the European context, and focuses on how freedom of religion and the concept of—and the promotion and protection of—rights for religious minorities have been framed and applied in the management and accommodation of religious diversity in national contexts as diverse as Latin America, South Africa, India and Asia. The final part of the Special Issue provides some concluding remarks and ideas for an enhanced realization of religious diversity through a combination of the protection of freedom of religion and the protection of the rights of religious minorities in Europe and beyond.   



Ventura, M. (ed.) (2021). The Legal Status of Old and New Religious Minorities in the European Union. Granada: Editorial Comares. Available at

For the second time in its lifetime, the European Consortium for Church and State Research deals with religious minorities in an explicit and systematic manner. The need to return to the same topic a quarter of a century later stems from the historical threefold change that has occurred in Europe in the social reality of minorities, in the actors’ perceptions, discourse and strategies, and in the framing of the very category of religious minorities, in society and the law.

Such fundamental change can be looked at from the long period perspective of developments since the XIXth century colonial treaties, or from the recent perspective of social transformations in contemporary Europe. In both perspectives, the category of ‘old and new minorities’ is crucial.

(from The two-way legal making of religious minorities. Introductory remarks, pp. 1-7)



Ferrari, D. (2021). Legal Code of Religious Minority Rights: Sources in International and European Law, Abingdon: Routledge. Available at 

In a time of increasing tensions around religious minorities, this volume presents a systematic collection of international and European documents on the protection and promotion of religious minorities' rights. The code includes documents from the United Nations, the Council of Europe, the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe and the European Union. An index system connects the various sources and norms, and emphasizes the strengths and the weaknesses in the legal frameworks of international and European institutions. While allowing for further research on the historical and conceptual development in the area, the code provides the reader with a new, easily accessible tool facilitating experts and actors who wish to improve the knowledge and protection of religious minorities. 


Reference texts

Bastian, J.-P., & Messner F. (eds.) (2007). Minorités religieuses dans l’éspace européen: Approches sociologiques et juridiques. Paris: Presses Universitaires de France (PUF)

Berend N, Hameau-Masset, Y., Nemo-Pekelman, C.,  & Tolan, J. V. (eds.) (2017). Religious Minorities in Christian, Jewish and Muslim Law (5th-15th centuries). Turnhout: Brepols Publishers

Berry, S.E. (2012). A Tale of Two Instruments: Religious Minorities and the Council of Europe’s Rights Regime. Netherlands Quarterly of Human Rights, 30 (1), pp. 10-39

Bielefeldt, H., Ghanea, N., & Wiener, M. (eds.) (2016). Freedom of Religion or Belief: An International Law Commentary, Oxford: Oxford University Press 

Bretscher, F. (2020). Protecting the Religious Freedom of New Minorities in International Law. Abingdon: Routledge

Caracciolo, I., & Montuoro, U. (eds.) (2020). Protection of Cultural and Religious Minorities: Leadership for International Peace and Security. Turin:, Giappichelli Editore

Chryssides G.D. (2018). Minority Religions in Europe and the Middle East: Mapping and Monitoring. Abingdon Routledge

Ferrari D. (2020). Il concetto di minoranza religiosa dal diritto internazionale al diritto europeo: Genesi, sviluppo e circolazione. Bologna: il Mulino 

Ferrari D. (2022, May). Religious Minorities and Sexual Diversity: The Holistic Approach. Revue du droit des religions, 13, pp. 207-225

Ferrari, S. (2020). Religious Minorities and Legal Pluralism in Europe, in K. von der Decken, & A. Günzel (eds.), Staat - Religion - Recht: Festschrift für Gerhard Robbers zum 70. Geburtstag. Baden-Baden: Nomos, pp. 353-368

Ferrari, S. (2021). The protection and promotion of religious minorities in EU countries: a law and religion perspective, in M. Ventura (ed.), The legal status of Old and New Religious Minorities in the European Union. Granada: Editorial Comares, pp. 19-34

Fokas, E. (2018). The legal status of religious minorities: Exploring the Impact of the European Court of Human Rights. Social Compass, 65(1), pp. 25-42

Ghanea, N. (2012). Are Religious Minorities Really Minorities?. Oxford Journal of Law and Religion, 1(1), pp. 57-79

Gunner, G., Slotte, P. P., & Kitanović, E. (eds.) (2019). Human Rights, Religious Freedom and Faces of Faith., Geneva:

Henrard, K. (2011). Minority Specific Rights: A Protection of Religious Minorities Going Beyond Freedom of Religion?. European Yearbook on Minority Issues, Vol. 8: 2009

Henrard, K. (2011). The Ambiguous Relationship Between Religious Minorities and Fundamental (minority) Rights, The Hague: Eleven International Publishing

Henrard, K. (2016). The European Court of Human Rights, Ethnic and Religious Minorities and the Two Dimensions of the Right to Equal Treatment: Jurisprudence at Different Speeds?. Nordic Journal of Human Rights, 34(3), pp.  157-177

Mahmood, S. (2015). Religious Difference in a Secular Age: A Minority Report. Princeton: Princeton University Press 

Obadia. L., & Zwilling, A.-L. (eds.) (2016). Minorité et communauté en religion. Strasbourg: Presses universitaires de Strasbourg

Triandafyllidou, A., & Magazzini, T. (eds.) (2021). Routledge Handbook on the Governance of Religious Diversity. Abingdon: Routledge

Van der Ven, J. (2008). Religious Rights for Minorities in a Policy of Recognition. Religion & Human Rights, 3, (2), pp.155-183

Zwilling, A.-L. (ed.) (2014). Minorités religieuses: religions minoritaires dans l’espace public. Strasbourg: Presses universitaires de Strasbourg


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