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Saving Leonardo: A Call to Resist the Secular Assault on Mind, Morals, and Meaning by [Pearcey, Nancy]
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Editorial Reviews

From the Inside Flap

Or does it lead to fragmentation and disintegration? In Saving Leonardo, best-selling, award-winning author Nancy Pearcey (Total Truth, co-author How Now Shall We Live?) makes a compelling case that secularism is destructive and dehumanizing.
Pearcey depicts the revolutionary thinkers and artists, the ideas and events, leading step by step to the unleashing of secular worldviews that undermine human dignity and liberty.  She crafts a fresh approach that exposes the real-world impact of ideas in philosophy, science, art, literature, and film--the voices that surround us in the classroom, in the movie theater, and in our living rooms.
A former agnostic, Pearcey offers a persuasive case for historic Christianity as a holistic and humane alternative.  She equips readers to counter the life-denying worldviews that are radically restructuring society and pervading our daily lives.  Whether you are a devoted Christian, a determined secularist, or don't know quite where you stand, reading Saving Leonardo will unsettle established views and topple ideological idols.

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.

Product Details

  • File Size: 19215 KB
  • Print Length: 341 pages
  • Publisher: B&H Books (September 1, 2010)
  • Publication Date: September 1, 2010
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00413QALK
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
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  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #98,199 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Top Customer Reviews

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."


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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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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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
"Saving Leonardo" has just become one of the most underlined and highlighted books I own!

Okay, I only own 5 books, but still...

My experience with Nancy Pearcey's writing is primarily based on her previous book, "Total Truth"--which is outstanding. I find her, once again, to be insightful, intellectually challenging, very interesting, and a brilliant analyst of culture--both historical culture and contemporary culture.

In "Saving Leonardo", Pearcey describes, in compelling ways, why the increasing "secularism" in our world is a serious problem. She makes the point that secularism is even a problem for those who do not consider themselves to be religious. She writes, "Because the word `secular' is the opposite of `religious', many people assume that secularism is a problem for religious groups only. Not so. When politics loses its moral dimension, we all lose. When political discourse is debased, the entire society suffers. The reason Christians should be concerned is not to protect their own subculture, but to protect the democratic process for all people."

Pearcey expands in helpful ways on the concept of the "fact/value split" about which she wrote in "Total Truth". She identifies the fact/value split as the "core of modern secularism". Read the book for her able defense of that contention.

In Part 2 of "Saving Leonardo", she addresses two paths to secularism--"originating in the clash between the Enlightenment and the Romantic movement"--in which she traces the "historical rise of secularism".
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