This book focuses on recognition and its relation to religion and theology, in both systematic and historical dimensions. While existing research literature on recognition and contemporary recognition theory has been gradually growing since the early 1990s, certain gaps remain in the field covered so far. One of these is the multifaceted interaction between the phenomena of recognition and religion.

Since recognition applies to persons, institutions, and normative entities like systems of beliefs, it also provides a very useful analytic and interpretative tool for studying religion. Divided into five sections, with chapters written by established scholars in their respective fields, the book explores the roots, history, and limits of recognition theory in the context of religious belief. Exploring early Christian and medieval sources on recognition and religion, it also offers contemporary applications of this underexplored combination.

This is a timely book, as debates over religious identities, problematic forms of extremism and societal issues related with multiculturalism continue to dominate the media and politics. It will, therefore, be of great interest to scholars of recognition studies as well as religious studies, theology, philosophy, and religious and intellectual history.

chapter |14 pages


ByMaijastina Kahlos, Heikki J. Koskinen, Ritva Palmén

part I|54 pages


chapter 1|17 pages

The recognition of religion in public spaces

BySimon Thompson

chapter 2|17 pages

Mediated recognition

Suggestions towards an articulation
ByHeikki J. Koskinen

chapter 3|18 pages

Causes for lack of recognition

From the secular to the non-secular
ByHeikki Ikäheimo

part II|78 pages

Historical struggles for recognition

chapter 4|19 pages

Early Christians and the transformation of recognition

ByHartmut Leppin

chapter 5|19 pages

Early Christians on philosophy

A religion seeking recognition in Greco-Roman culture
ByNiko Huttunen

chapter 6|18 pages

Recognition through persuasion

An aspect of late antique religious controversy 1
ByMar Marcos

chapter 7|20 pages

Recognizing the road

Greco-Roman appeals for religious diversity in the late Roman Empire
ByMaijastina Kahlos

part III|70 pages

Medieval and early modern intersections

chapter 8|19 pages

Shame, self-evaluation, and recognition in the Middle Ages

ByRitva Palmén

chapter 9|12 pages

Aquinas on recognition

ByAndrea Aldo Robiglio

chapter 11|21 pages

Recognition and masculinity

Luther on the Song of Songs
ByRisto Saarinen

part IV|32 pages

Roots of recognition theory

part V|42 pages

Limits of recognition

chapter 14|19 pages

On the natural basis and ecological limits of recognition

ByArto Laitinen, Teea Kortetmäki

chapter 15|21 pages

Justice, friendship, and recognition

Reflections on ancient and late ancient debates
ByMiira Tuominen