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Karl Barth, The Word of God and the Word of Man (Peter Smith, 1928) It is true that the translation of a work of literature is often as much of an art as the work of literature itself. Having now read three long translations of Karl Barth from three different translators, I can speculate that the above statement is, perhaps, more true of nonfiction being translated from German to English than it is anywhere else. Douglas Horton's translation of Barth stands head and shoulders over the other two authors whose translations I've attempted, and the man deserves to be commended for a job well done before I get into the meat of the book. The Word of God and the Word of Man is a collection of eight addresses Barth gave to Reformed conventions during the first half of the period between the two world wars. At this point, Barth was still the young country preacher he spent his life professing to be, and his youth should be taken into account when comparing the writings in this book with some of his other works. Barth is a bit more, shall we say, pointed here than he is in later works. Not that that's a bad thing, by any means. Perhaps it is the case that Barth's exhortations to his fellow ministers are different and more positive than those he used to congregants. But as a non-Christian reading Barth, the thing that kept coming back to me is that if more churches (and Reform or not, most Protestant denominations these seem to pay at least lip service to Barth's works) actually practiced what Barth preached, I might still be a member of one.Read more ›