Desiring a Better Country: Forays in Political Theology

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Douglas Farrow seldom shies from controversy. Discussing several hot-button issues such as religion in public life, educational freedom, human rights, and the definition of marriage, Farrow challenges the common misconception that secular institutions can be religiously neutral. Inspired by current legal, political, and philosophical debates in North America, Desiring a Better Country engages leading political thinkers from Augustine to John Rawls and John Courtney Murray, contemporary political figures such as Michael Ignatieff and Justin Trudeau, as well as legal scholars and Supreme Court judgments. Writing from a Catholic perspective, Farrow also incorporates contributions from the Church's pre- and post-Vatican II teaching. His arguments treat five pressing issues: the grounding of human rights, the dislocation of the goods of marriage, the incoherence of normative pluralism, the uncertain future of religious freedom, and the peculiar liberty of the Church. Provocatively written, well-informed, and relevant to current affairs, Desiring a Better Country is a timely intervention in debates on religion, civil society, and the state.

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An outstanding book, one of the most engaging and provocative I’ve read in some time. Douglas Farrow openly and unapologetically draws on a rich, non-secular intellectual tradition that people of any faith (or of none) ought to find valuable. Desiring a Better Country is erudite, insightful, and eloquent.” Stephen D. Smith, Warren Distinguished Professor of Law, University of San Diego

"Written with an exceptional clarity of style, the genuine dialectical spirit of Desiring a Better Country respects both the reader and the complexity of the questions tackled, so that one feels invited to judge by oneself, as one should.” Thomas de Koninck, Professor of Philosophy, Université Laval


"Douglas Farrow is one of North America’s most trenchant, insightful analysts of the cultural confusions that are creating the 21st-century crisis of democracy. Serious people will pay serious attention to what he writes.” George Weigel , Distinguished Senior Fellow, Ethics and Public Policy Center, Washington, DC

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