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Title:Church and state relations: Western norms, Muslim practice, and the African experience. A comparative account of origin and practice
Author:Sanneh, L.O.ISNI
Book title:Proselytization and communal self-determination in Africa
Editor:Na'im, A.A.a.
City of publisher:Maryknoll, NY
Publisher:Orbis Books
Geographic term:Africa
Subjects:missionary history
Church and State
Muslim-Christian relations
Abstract:These historical, cross-cultural and interfaith perspectives on the origin and practice of the separation of Church and State include numerous examples of the complex relationship between Islam and political authority in precolonial Muslim Africa, as well as an account of the attempt by Governor Sir Charles MacCarthy to introduce territorial 'Christendom' in the colony of Freetown, Sierra Leone. The Muslim and settler Christian leaders concerned felt that religion had a crucial role to play in setting the temporal limits of State power. The insistence in classical Muslim sources that 'Church and State' are interdependent finds echoes in MacCarthy's views on Church-State unity. Today such views conflict with the Western secular practice of strict separation, and balancing Muslim theocratic claims and Western secularism represents one of the great challenges of contemporary statesmanship. Bibliogr., notes, ref.