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The Irrational Atheist: Dissecting the Unholy Trinity of Dawkins, Harris, And Hitchens Hardcover – March 11, 2008

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 305 pages
  • Publisher: BenBella Books; 1ST edition (March 11, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1933771364
  • ISBN-13: 978-1933771366
  • Product Dimensions: 1 x 6.2 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (106 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #812,853 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews


"Day does us all a service by exposing as false some of the glib slogans of atheism."  —Todd Seavey, American Council on Science and Health

"Good polemical stuff."  —

"Whether you embrace Day’s theology or toss it, there is no avoiding the cumulative force of the author's counter assaults or the sting of his wit when it comes to the true focus of the book—atheism’s continuing love affair with nonsense."  —First Things

About the Author

Vox Day is a writer, columnist, software designer and the author of Rebel Moon,
The World in Shadow, and The War in Heaven: Eternal Warriors Book 1. He is the CEO of a technology corporation, writes a popular weekly political column, and maintains an active blog, Vox Popoli, which has 2,500 daily readers.

Customer Reviews

Seeming, simply because he just doesn't like atheists.
Dominic Saltarelli
The book seems to mainly be about destroying the idea of the 'militant atheist', a point that I think even Sam Harris has been clear on.
The other problem with The Irrational Atheist is actually not with its arguments but with the way they're presented.

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

132 of 160 people found the following review helpful By M. D. Colebourne on May 1, 2008
Format: Hardcover
Despite approaching this from the perspective of a (weak) atheist who has admired Dawkins greatly over the years I enjoyed this book. Anyone who doesn't want to slip into the comfy zone of only ever debating and discussing with people who concur might disagree but, personally, I think that knowing your opponent is preferable. And, when your opponent manages to strike some good blows AND entertain you into the bargain it has to be a good outcome.

Vox Day has, in general, steered clear of cant and, instead, directly addressed the facts and assertions employed by Harris, Dawkins and Dennett and it is here that, for me at least, the book had the most value. Vox has done his research and lucidly sets out his facts. I think that there are clearly flaws in some of the argumentation, as has been pointed out in other reviews, with a-priori assumption of that to be proved being the most common complaint. However, it's entertaining if you like the mental exercise.

Having said that, I would love to have a book from Vox that addresses the fundamentals; my view is that the impact of a fact, for good or ill, has no bearing whatsoever on its veracity. One can argue that atheism or theism leads to better or worse outcomes but it is fundamentally irrelevant to the argument. Ultimately, there is or there is not a God - period.

Therefore it is entirely pointless for either side to argue for or against the existence of God on the basis of whether that means people behave better, do or do not persecute other races or any other consequence; benign or malign. The consequences are our problem.

In fact, I would love to have books from both sides that directly address the fundamentals rather than long treatises on who behaves better, produces better laws etc etc.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By David Marshall on June 18, 2013
Format: Hardcover
This book reminds me of one of my son's video games. Begin exploring this world, and you will be set upon by dragons, walking skeletons, warewolves, and other monsters. But with the shield of snark, the sword of logic, and great balls of rhetorical fire, you subdue these monsters one after the other -- the Dawkins, the Harris, the Dennett, the Hitchens. (Though contrary to some reviewers, Beale evinces sympathy for these latter two monsters.) Of course, blowing up the creature does not mean it will not come back, to be set down again on its scaly or bony behind.

Where does your wandering take you? Beale admits from the outset that he has no fixed destination of demonstrable truth he is aiming for. (Though he has certain assumptions, justification unspecified.) The game is the thing in which he will capture the heart of the reader.

This is no fun if you are allied with the monsters, or agree with their philosophy, as is evident from many reviews below. It can be a lot of fun if you accept the premise of the game -- battle for battle's sake, intellectual conquest to watch the sparks fly and put monsters in their place. Anyone who likes boring prose (and there seem to be some of you out there!) should leave it alone. Those who hate writers who go off on tangents should also find something else to read. New Atheists who can't stand criticism and lack any sense of humor (except by Dawkins or Myers) should run, not walk in the other direction.

This is not to say that Beale offers no facts. In some cases Beale gives detailed data in service of his arguments.
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19 of 26 people found the following review helpful By Brett L. Markham on October 22, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I am not on either side of the atheist/religionist camp. I have enjoyed some of Dawkins' work (such as The Blind Watchmaker) but personally I do not consider creationism and evolution to be mutually exclusive. Could not a deity, for example, create through evolution?

Likewise, I am keenly aware that on the sentience quotient scale (SQ), which is logarithmic, it is entirely possible for entities to exist that are as much more sentient than humans as humans are more sentient than rocks, meaning we could understand such entities about as well as rocks understand humans. And to such entities, our "science" would be as meaningful as the "science" that rocks formulate is meaningful to us. So the concept of deity falls, in my opinion, within the realm of theoretical possibility without contradicting science.

At the same time, the idea that some person's interpretation of the meaning of an unverifiable deity's words should regulate my choices seems disconnected from reality. I do not appreciate proselyte atheism (which seems more like an intolerant religion than science to me) any more than I appreciate someone informing me that his deity's will is for me to burn in Hell. At the same time, I appreciate that it is difficult if not impossible to create self-referential moral codes and can see both the benefits and harms attributed to both deistic religions (such as Catholicism) and non-deistic religions (such as atheism and feminism).

That having been said, I truly and thoroughly enjoyed this book. A lot. For truly intellectually curious people who don't want to live in an echo chamber, this book is truly thought-provoking in a number of important realms.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews

More About the Author

Hugo-nominated author Vox Day writes epic fantasy as well as non-fiction about religion, philosophy, and economics. His literary focus is military realism, historical verisimilitude, and plausible characters who represent the full spectrum of human behavior. He is a professional game designer who speaks three languages and a three-time Billboard top 40 recording artist.

He maintains the most popular blog in the science fiction and fantasy field, Vox Popoli, which averages over one million pageviews per month. He has been ranked as a top 100 SF author by Amazon, and is proud to bear the historic distinction of being the first and only member to be formally purged from the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America. He is a Native American and his books have been translated into nine languages.

He is also, with Tom Kratman, the co-creator of the military science fiction anthology series, RIDING THE RED HORSE.

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