Description : With a clear statement of the theoretical issues in the debates about secularization and post-secularism, ‘Religion and the State: A Comparative Sociology’ considers a number of major case studies – from China, Europe, Singapore and South Asia – in order to understand the rise of public religions in the modern state. By distinguishing between political secularization – the separation of state and religion – and social secularization – the transformation of the everyday practice of religion – this volume offers an integrating framework within which to analyze these different societies.
Description : This book presents a human rights-based assessment of the various modes of state religion identification and of the various forms of state practice that characterize these different state religion models. This book makes a case for the recognition of a state duty to remain impartial with respect to religion or belief in all regards so as to comply with people s fundamental right to be governed, at all times, in a religiously neutral manner. As this book demonstrates through the various case studies there is increasing interest and concern at the manner in which questions concerning the enjoyment of the right to the freedom of religion or belief bear upon key questions concerning the governance of democratic society. Issues raised involve matters concerning employment, education, expression, association and, more generally, the interface between religion and political life. The existing literature often traces these concerns back to the need to consider the place of religion in contemporary society but leaves matters there. Another body of academic literature explores the theoretical dimensions of that relationship but fails to connect it to the practice of states in order to test out the propositions which are the product of these reflections. The great virtue of this work is that is seeks to unite these various enterprises and engages head on with the challenges which this produces The aim is to demonstrate and illustrate the key contention: that there is an emergent right to religiously neutral governance, and that this is incompatible with the continuation of systems which offer preference to particular forms of belief system religious or otherwise. A chief virtue of this book is that it works through the consequences of this claim in a fearless fashion, posing challenges for those states which continue to use their legal frameworks to offer support (directly or indirectly) for historical, dominant or favoured forms of religion or belief. It challenges received assumptions and, by driving the logic of contemporary human rights thinking to the foundations of state-religion relationships performs a valuable service for those engaging with this most difficult and timely of questions. Malcolm D. Evans, Professor of Public International Law, University of Bristol
Description : "Contributors to the volume are established scholars in their fields and successfully focus on the pertinent issues with a good mix of facts, analysis, and theoretical orientation. The contributions are pertinent and valuable to students of comparative politics generally, as well as to specialists on the selected countries."-Choice
Description : The historical and empirical project presented here is grounded in a desire to theorize ‘religion-state’ relations in the multi-ethnic, multi-religious, secular city-state of Singapore. The core research problematic of this project has emerged out of the confluence of two domains, ‘religion, law and bureaucracy’ and ‘religion and colonial encounters.’ This work has two core objectives: one, to articulate the actual points of engagement between institutions of religion and the state, and two, to identify the various processes, mechanisms and strategies through which relations across these spheres are sustained. The thematic foundations of this book rest on disentangling the complex interactions between religious communities, individuals and the various manifestations of the Singapore state, relationships that are framed within a culture of bureaucracy. This is accomplished through a scrutiny of Hindu domains on the island nation-state, from her identity as part of the Straits Settlements to the present day. The empirical and analytical emphases of this book rest on the author's engagement with the realm of Hinduism as it is conceived, structured, framed and practiced within the context of a strong state in Singapore today. Ethnographically,the book focusses on Hindu temple management and the observance of Hindu festivals and processions, enacted within administrative and bureaucratic frames.
Description : This book delves into the extent of government involvement in religion between 1990 and 2002 using both quantitative and qualitative methodology. The study is based on the Religion and State dataset, which includes 175 governments across the globe, all of which are addressed individually in this book. The forms of involvement examined in this study include whether the government has an official religion, whether some religions are given preferential treatment, religious discrimination against minority religion, government regulation of the majority religion, and religious legislation. The study shows that government involvement in religion is ubiquitous, that it increased significantly during this period, and that only a minority of states, including a minority of democracies, have separation of religion and state. These findings contradict the predictions of religion's reduced public significance found in modernization and secularization theory. The findings also demonstrate that state religious monopolies are linked to reduced religious participation.
Description : In State and Religion in China, Anthony Yu takes a fresh look at Chinese religion and its relation to politics. He argues, against those who claim that Chinese politics has been traditionally secular, or even that the Chinese traditionally had no religion that religion has deep roots in the Chinese past, and that the Chinese state has from its creation always interfered in relgious matters.
Description : In this edition, updated to reflect recent events and trends, Wald (political science, U. of Florida, Gainesville) and Calhoun-Brown (political science, Georgia State U., Atlanta) show how religious ideas, institutions, movements and communities figure in American political life. They cover whether the US is in fact a secular society, the relations
Description : This volume combines the perspective of religion as a constructed category of modernity with the analytic focus and empirical grounding of institutional social science to develop a new approach to the study of state and religion in modern and contemporary China.