Seminar: Human Rights, Law and Religion: Perspectives on the Islamic Face Veil

The Centre for Conflict, Rights & Justice, in collaboration with the Centre for Advocacy, will host a seminar on 30 March 2015 which will explore some of the legal and human rights issues surrounding the Islamic face veil – the niqab and the burqa.

On 30 March 2015 the Centre for Conflict, Rights and Justice, in collaboration with the Nottingham Law School Centre for Advocacy, will host a seminar which will explore some of the legal and human rights issues surrounding the Islamic face veil – the niqab and the burqa.

Against a backdrop of a 'crisis in multiculturalism', religious radicalisation, growth in Islamophobia and international conflict, the Islamic veil has become the subject of intense controversy across Europe in recent years. This seminar will explore, amongst other things:

  • the general debate over religious manifestation and religious dress in modern 'secular' Europe
  • the issue of restrictions placed on the wearing of the face veil in public space in some European states, and the approach of the European Court of Human Rights to the issue, notably in the case of SAS v France
  • the issue as it has arisen in the context of court proceedings in England and Wales – in particular the question of whether, and/or to what extent, defendants and others should be permitted to wear the face veil during trial, an issue that was considered recently in a case at Blackfriars Crown Court, prompting much public comment, and leading the Lord Chief Justice to call for a public consultation on the matter.

The examination of these and related issues raises fascinating and important questions around culture, belief, identity, autonomy, identification, credibility, the nature of public space and the very concept of the secular state.
This seminar will bring together distinguished commentators, with contrasting perspectives, from academia, legal practice and wider civil society.

All are welcome to attend and contribute to the planned sessions, whether they be academics or students, those of religious faith or not, legal practitioners or members of the public, activists or simply those interested in the issues (or any combination of the above).

The event is being generously supported by Cartwright King Solicitors, and by Paragon Law Solicitors.

Speakers

  • Dr Rajnaara Akhtar, University of Warwick
  • Yasmin Alibhai-Brown, Journalist, social commentator
  • Professor Eva Brems, University of Ghent, Belgium
  • Professor Susan Edwards, University of Buckingham
  • Felicity Gerry QC, Barrister, 36 Bedford Row, London and researcher at Charles Darwin University, Australia
  • Samantha Knights, Barrister, Matrix Chambers, London
  • Professor Jill Marshall, University of Leicester
  • Dr Anastasia Vakulenko, Birmingham University
  • Jeremy Robson, Barrister, Senior Lecturer, Director of NLS Centre for Advocacy

Date: 30 March 2015.
Time: 10.30 am – 5.30 pm (with registration starting at 10.00 am).
Venue: The Court Room, Chaucer Building, Goldsmith Street, Nottingham.
Fee: The event is free, but all delegates will need to register on line, since places are limited.
A light lunch will be served, plus tea and coffee in the morning and afternoon.

Further details of the event

Book your place

Seminar: Human Rights, Law and Religion: Perspectives on the Islamic Face Veil

Published on 8 January 2015
  • Category: Nottingham Law School

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