Review: Islamic Leviathan–Islam and the Making of State Power

4 Star, Atlases & State of the World, Country/Regional, History, Power (Pathologies & Utilization), Religion & Politics of Religion, Threats (Emerging & Perennial), Truth & Reconciliation
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4.0 out of 5 stars Two Case Studies on Islam and the State,

March 10, 2002
Seyyed Vali Reza Nasr
This book seems to have been overlooked in the rush to understand Islam in the aftermath of 9-11.I recommend it because it provides two reasoned case studies on how two different states, Malaysia and Pakistan, used the intensity of Islam to legitimize their governments and states.

In the end, both had to control their fanatics.

Well documented, with good notes and bibliography, this book is the first in a new series from Oxford on Religion and Global Politics. It is a very fine first start, and in the aftermath of 9-11, I would suggest to the editors of the series that they dramatically accelerate their other endeavors–at least three more books are needed on Islam in relation to state politics, in relation to political economy, and in relation to neighborhood or ethnic politics; and several others on the relationship of Judaism and Catholicism and Mormonism to state structures. A special emphasis on religious education and how this affects political perceptions would be helpful.

This is a thoughtful book and one that should be part of the broader reading on Islam and global politics.

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