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Saving Leonardo: A Call to Resist the Secular Assault on Mind, Morals, and Meaning Hardcover


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 336 pages
  • Publisher: B&H Books; First Printing edition (September 1, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1433669277
  • ISBN-13: 978-1433669279
  • Product Dimensions: 10.3 x 7.4 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (52 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #21,110 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Nancy Pearcey wrote Saving Leonardo while serving as research profes­sor of Worldview Studies at Philadelphia Biblical University. Pearcey studied Christian worldview at L'Abri Fellowship in Switzerland with Francis Schaeffer, and was later named the Francis A. Schaeffer Scholar at the World Journalism Institute in New York City. She earned a masters degree from Covenant Theological Seminary, and pursued further graduate work in the History of Philosophy at the Institute for Christian Studies in Toronto. Pearcey has been a commentator on Public Square Radio, the founding editor of the daily radio program "BreakPoint," and has appeared on NPR and C-SPAN. Currently she is a fellow at the Discovery Institute and editor-at-large of The Pearcey Report. She coauthored a column in Christi­anity Today, and has authored or contrib­uted to several books, including The Soul of Science and How Now Shall We Live? (with Charles Colson, contributions by Harold Fickett). Her most recent book was the bestselling Total Truth: Liberating Christianity from Its Cultural Captivity, which won the 2005 ECPA Gold Me­dallion Award for best book of the year on Christianity & Society.

More About the Author

Nancy Pearcey is the director of the Francis Schaeffer Center at Houston Baptist University, where she is also professor and scholar in residence. A former agnostic, she studied Christian worldview at L'Abri Fellowship in Switzerland with Francis Schaeffer, and was later named the Francis A. Schaeffer Scholar at the World Journalism Institute in New York City. She earned a masters degree from Covenant Theological Seminary, and pursued further graduate work in the History of Philosophy at the Institute for Christian Studies in Toronto. Pearcey has been a commentator on Public Square Radio, the founding editor of the daily radio program "BreakPoint," and has appeared on NPR and C-SPAN. Currently she is a fellow at the Discovery Institute and editor-at-large of The Pearcey Report. She coauthored a column in Christianity Today, and has authored or contributed to several books, including The Soul of Science and How Now Shall We Live? (with Charles Colson, contributions by Harold Fickett), and the bestselling Total Truth: Liberating Christianity from Its Cultural Captivity, which won the 2005 ECPA Gold Medallion Award for best book of the year on Christianity & Society. She wrote her latest book, Saving Leonardo, while serving as research professor of Worldview Studies at Philadelphia Biblical University.

Pearcey has taught several homeschool courses for high schoolers, most recently a course based on her new book, Saving Leonardo: A Call to Resist the Secular Assault on Mind, Morals, & Meaning. She discovered that making the concepts clear and accessible to high schoolers made the book more fun to read for everyone else too. She has decided that teens make the best editors, and from now on, she hopes to teach all her books to teens before they are published.

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Nancy Pearcey is a thinker who learned under the great Francis Schaeffer.
E. Johnson
We are using this book for our book study group and it is excellent for reading on your own and then gathering for discussion.
Life is Now.
Next, Christians must understand how secularism views the nature of truth.
Dr. David Steele

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

79 of 87 people found the following review helpful By Dr. David Steele on August 27, 2010
Format: Hardcover
Nancy Pearcey has done it again. Her book Total Truth captured the attention of thousands and helped equip a new generation of thinking Christians. While some consider the term "thinking Christian" somewhat of an oxymoron (think, "military intelligence," or "jumbo shrimp"), nothing could be further from the truth. Indeed, clear thinking and warm-hearted devotion are crucial characteristics for anyone who professes faith in Christ. Anyone who rejects the notion of a "thinking Christian" should pause and consider the thought process generated in order to make the claim!

Pearcey's newest masterpiece, Saving Leonardo is as the subtitle suggests a call to resist the secular assault on mind, morals, and meaning. The primary assertion: "The only hope lies in a worldview that is rationally defensible, life affirming, and rooted in creation itself."

THE THREAT OF GLOBAL SECULARISM

In part one, author clearly articulates the necessity of a Christ-informed worldview. She challenges readers: "Do you have the tools to detect the ideas competing for your allegiance in movies, school textbooks, news broadcasts, and even Saturday morning cartoons?"

Pearcey reveals the goal of the book at the outset: "The goal of this book is to equip you to detect, decipher, and defeat the monolithic secularism that is spreading rapidly and imposing its values on your family and hometown." As such, she calls Christians to abandon the "fortress mentality" that has been prominent for years; a mentality that gravitates to isolation from the world. Rather, Christ followers ought to become familiar with their audience and engage with them on a worldview level.
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31 of 35 people found the following review helpful By Peter Baklava on September 21, 2011
Format: Hardcover
Q. How do you become the youngest artist to get a full-floor show at the Whitney Museum?

A. You hack into the program codes of discarded video games. You retrieve the "wallpaper" design of clouds that paraded behind the "Super Mario Brothers". You project it on the gallery wall. Voile'! You're a GENIUS!!

I preface this review by noting that I am a liberal, and I fully expected to dislike "Saving Leonardo" intensely. Instead, I often found myself in full agreement with it.

Here's what I agreed with: It IS important to understand the philosophical bases underlying art, music, and culture. Reconnecting art with the spiritual is also important. "Saving Leonardo", better than most art texts or art historians dare to, elucidates the connections between art, science, and metaphysical ideas.

Pearcey is also correct that many young students come out of college with no critical powers of reasoning. The art department is the most politically correct place you will find on any college campus. Students often emerge from it thinking they are revolutionaries, when in fact they are reactionaries. There is currently a "war" on the traditional art object, like a brush-created painting in a frame or a piece of figurative sculpture. Students are encouraged to believe that conceptual and postmodern art, possibly composed entirely of appropriated junk (things the artist procured or "found" but had no hand in creating) , is actually far superior to traditional forms of art.

It's hard not to feel that the most successful, most lauded, or most visible art created these days is often some kind of simple or elaborate stunt. "Art is whatever we say it is", Andy Warhol propounded. Art is whatever you can sell someone. It is the apotheosis of elitism.
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15 of 16 people found the following review helpful By John Gardner on April 19, 2011
Format: Hardcover
"True wisdom consists in seeing every field of knowledge through the lens of God's truth -- government, science, economics, business, and the arts."

Though we're not even halfway through 2011 yet, I have a pretty good feeling this will end up being my favorite book of the year. A book on apologetics, culture, and philosophy that spends a lot of time focused on art, music, and literature is right up my alley! I actually finished reading it a couple months ago, but my brain was so full it took me a long time to process everything to be able to write a review. It's still a daunting task, but hopefully I can at least give you enough of a taste of what Pearcey offers in this book to make you want to read it... because you really should!

"Saving Leonardo" is broken down into two Parts, though the second makes up the bulk of the book. Part 1 ("The Threat of Global Secularism") shows the extent to which our culture has been co-opted by secularist thinking. Nearly everyone has a worldview that has been affected to some degree by secularism.

Far from being a conservative "fearmongerer", or attacking an abstract secular "boogeyman", Nancy Pearcey is very deliberate and nuanced in her description of what secularism is, and how and why it is so pervasive in our culture. The primary way in which secular thinking works its way even into the worldviews of most Christians is through the "fact/value dichotomy". Pearcey builds off the work of Francis Schaeffer (under whom she studied at L'Abri), who described a "two-story concept of truth". In this conception, "the lower story consists of scientific facts, which are held to be empirically testable and universally valid.
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