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In Bad Faith: What's Wrong With the Opium of the People Paperback – October 25, 2011

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 226 pages
  • Publisher: Prometheus Books (October 25, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 161614470X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1616144708
  • Product Dimensions: 0.5 x 6.3 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,164,566 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews


"In this fascinating book, Levine combines an insightful analysis of important nineteenth-century thinkers who puzzled over why religion persists with a critique of twentieth-century liberal theologies as they have developed in Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. Levine argues that liberal theologies are intellectually flawed. They provide a means for those who cannot give up on religion to retain pale shadows of the traditions with which liberal believers try to remain in contact. Those shadows, Levine contends, are untrue to what liberal believers, in their hearts, already know."
-ELLIOTT SOBER, author, Did Darwin Write the Origin Backwards?

About the Author

Andrew Levine is the author of many books and articles—most recently Political Keywords, The American Ideology, and A Future for Marxism? He was, for many years, professor of philosophy at the University of Wisconsin–Madison and, more recently, research professor in philosophy at the University of Maryland–College Park. He is currently a senior scholar at the Institute for Policy Studies, Washington, DC.

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51 of 55 people found the following review helpful By J. Alan Bock on June 7, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Recently I was "surfing" my TV trying to find something interesting to watch when I encountered Turner Classic Movies and saw Jeanette MacDonald singing. I love Jeanette MacDonald and immediately recognized the scene as one appearing near the end of the 1936 movie "San Francisco," which also starred Clark Gable and Spencer Tracy. Jeanette plays the part of a classically trained singer who is down on her luck and forced to seek employment in the nightclub of Clark Gable where she sings "pop" songs ("San Francisco".) Gable plays the most sinful, scoffing but adorable scoundrel in all of San Francisco. He is, of course, a Godless atheist. Spencer Tracy plays the part of a priest who was a childhood chum of Clark Gable and who seems to spend most of his time trying to bring Clark back to the faith. Near the end of the movie they are visited by the great San Francisco earthquake of 1906. Gigantic buildings are toppled, fires erupt everywhere, water mains are broken, thousands of people are killed, injured or rendered homeless. It was the greatest natural disaster in the city's history. But something happens to Clark. Instead of being confirmed in his Godless cynicism he sinks to his knees in prayer as a large crowd sings, "Nearer My God to Thee." End of movie!

How often when natural disasters strike do survivors thank God for their good fortune? Why is there such blindness to the incontrovertible conclusion that, if God exists, he must be a sadist or an incompetent or both? Why is such wilful blindness so difficult to expunge? That greater and lesser evils have always been with us ought to be a problem for believers in an all powerful, all-knowing, and perfectly good God. Experience raises this problem continually and relentlessly.
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