The relationship between religion and public life is a universal problem, but discussions of it quickly become very local. They begin with the global reality of religious diversity, then the analysis descends into the particulars of the legal and constitutional system immediately in view, assuming always the sociological features of religious diversity most familiar to the audience at hand. French analysts typically take laïcité as the standard for modern solutions to the problem, while they view with alarm the cultural gap which separates older French citizens from recent Muslim immigrants. American writers, by contrast, usually have a more benign view of cultural diversity, which has grown up over generations of immigration. They turn quickly to the ambiguities of church–state law which govern religious expression in public space. Roger Trigg provides a thoughtful alternative to these parochial analyses. His Religion in Public Life explores a variety of national settings and he formulates his questions in terms which avoid legal or religious assumptions that are already in place where the question is asked. At the same time, he makes no premature claims to rational universality or global solutions. Religion in Public Life is primarily an investigation of European and North American contexts, or in other places which share a British legal and cultural heritage. In these places, religion and public life are shaped by the realities of modern law and the modern state and appeals to reason still mean something, even if they cannot mean quite as much as liberal theorists thought they meant only a few decades ago. But even among these nations, linked by culture, commerce and commitment to democracy, there is a surprising range of legal arrangements relating to religious expression and religious institutions and there are considerable differences in the social facts behind the legal differences. This, Trigg suggests, is a large enough world to allow us to discuss real differences without succumbing to the confusion which sometimes results from too much information. It is also a world in which we are acutely aware that public life has problems in need of solutions. Instead of hurrying to keep religion out of sight or under control, we are perhaps more willing to see what it has to contribute.