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The Enlightenment and Religion: The Myths of Modernity Paperback – March 4, 2004

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Manchester University Press (March 4, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0719067413
  • ISBN-13: 978-0719067419
  • Product Dimensions: 0.8 x 5.4 x 8.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.7 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: #2,422,387 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews


"This book makes an important case for rethinking the relationship between the Enlightenment and religion. It contributes to a new understanding of familiar material by treating it in an original and stimulating manner and will be valuable to both specialists and general readers."--Jane Shaw, New College, Oxford

About the Author

S.J. Barnett is Subject Leader in History of Ideas, University of Kingston-upon-Thames.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
This book challenges the traditional view of the Enlightenment and defends the view that it was far less deistic, secular, and anti-Christian than has been previously thought. In particular, he advocates downgrading traditional estimates of the number and influence of deists and atheists, and points out the many Christian sources of enlightened thought, from dissenting Christians in England to the Jansenists in France. Overall, Barnett's thesis is well-argued and persuasive, although he overstates his point at times. It was certainly true, for instance, that deists possessed intellectual influence out of proportion to their numbers. Nevertheless, Barnett's work is worthy of serious attention for pointing out the real, sometimes gaping flaws in previous interpretations of the rise of modernity.
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