God and Caesar: A Never-Ending Competition

Author: Jocelyne Cesari

December 7, 2021

In this article, published in the Harvard Divinity Bulletin, Senior Fellow Jocelyne Cesari unpacks the complex history of religion and nation-state formation both in and beyond the West. Highlighting the connection between political modernization and religious modernization, Cesari argues that the exportation of the nation-state framework outside of the West reordered religious and political legitimacy. Tensions between God and Caesar, argues Cesari, are ultimately inherent to the expansion of the international system. The article is adapted from the introduction to her new book, We God's People: Christianity, Islam and Hinduism in the World of Nations (Cambridge University Press, December 2021), and is published in the Autumn/Winter 2021 edition of the bulletin.

related publication | We God's People: Christianity, Islam and Hinduism in the World of Nations

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