Author: Jeff Haynes Published by: Addison Wesley Longman, London, 1998, 243pp, $69.95.

This erudite work by Jeff Haynes on the role of religion in modern world politics seeks to address the question of why religion is mostly refusing to accept its place in the `private sphere'. While in many states, religion has never retreated from its relations with the state, in the last decade religion has come back to prominence in former marxist states. Haynes establishes a typology of church-state relations: confessional church-state, such as Iran; generally religious states such as the United States or Indonesia; established church within a highly secular society, like Britain; liberal secular like much of Western Europe; and the marxist secular states.

Haynes's work is presented as an appropriate textbook because of its expansive survey of the role of religion in different contexts, and that may well be so. However it does have some omissions. Iran is consciously left out because, as the author explains, much has been written on it already. However, as one of the world's few theocracies its absence seems unwarranted (likewise Afghanistan). The book covers Europe, the Americas, parts of Asia and Africa.

While Haynes deems some faiths worthy of a brief synopsis for the uninitiated, this tends to be on those religions exotic to his own Western background. There are a few factual errors: illustratively, there is a failure to credit Malcolm X's change of heart against rigid Black Separatism towards the end of his life; unexplained references to `caste systems' within the Buddhist and Sikh communities; and Nahdatul Ulama's relationship to Indonesia's ruling party is far more nebulous than the staunch opposition that is implied here.

It is important, however, to move past these gaps and recognise that this work is an impressive volume that seeks to examine church-state relationships in a vast number of contexts, leading to a superb analysis of religion in the modern world. A fascinating part of this work is the analysis of the re-emergence of religion within the former marxist states, including a chapter on the religious and ethnic mosaic of Central Asia, an area that is still largely a closed book to the rest of the world. Haynes leads the reader through a world where there is quite an array of church-state interactions. There are, to take some examples, the various Islamic organisations that completely reject the notion of...

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