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Showing 1-10 of 24 reviews(Verified Purchases). See all 47 reviews
on February 13, 2015
I give this book 3 stars because I do like her informed and cogent essay on Darwinism. She has studied the phenomenon in question, considered the opposing views, and presented her case with good logic. Unfortunately, none of these qualities is brought to bear on her next essay, "Family".
The writing there is subjective, wandering, and absent of any traditional wisdom or sound research on family. From there we go on to personal reminiscing.
This is a book with but one arrow in the quiver.
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on June 26, 2015
Many of these essays were excellent. Robinson makes many very good points - particularly regarding those who write about others (like Calvin) without actually having read their work. The last two essays seemed repetitive to me - they made arguments that had already appeared in earlier chapters, and occasionally seemed to re-make the same point multiple times. That said, Robinson's writing is a joy to read. The mechanics of her sentences and her word choices turn all of the essays into sparkling jewels. Have a dictionary handy, as you will be dazzled by some words you don't see often that turn out to be PRECISELY the right choice.
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on September 8, 2014
So good, so smart, so cantankerous, vox clamantis in deserto. Putting the Enlightenment in its fuller context, shining the light on the estimable Marguerite de Navarre and her intellectual heir - John Calvin and his inestimable contributions to the concept of liberal democracy!, some goodhearted exegesis, and the other (compassionate) side of Puritanism.

Not a 'religious' book as such, yet one filled with spirit and tempered by reason. There is always something in Robinson's writing that tickles my casuistry bone, but I'm firmly convinced she'd welcome the debate. Highly recommend.
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on March 30, 2016
Reading this book is like a soul-searching journey. In the modern age of cynicism and existentialist crisis, I am at loss of my own spirits, that mysticism Robinson stresses as vital in defining our own humanity. There a lot of things we cannot answer, and Robinson has guided me with reason to believe again.
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on February 28, 2015
What a refreshing change! To read someone who has actually thought deeply about who she is, and where our culture is going. Thank you, Marilynne Robinson for your clear-eyed, informed, educated and thoughtful reflections, expressed so elegantly! What might be a painful chastisement so well - crafted, and lovingly and humbly delivered, becomes a pleasure.
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on February 14, 2015
some essays were tough going for the uninitiated like me, but it's true page-notching/notes-in-margin reading. this author is simply other worldly and can really write. wow.
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on December 30, 2016
Great. Thoughts on Darwinism economics a must read
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on January 30, 2016
Really opened my mind to a different angle on the protestant view.
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on August 2, 2017
A must read.
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on October 6, 2014
This book of essays is more than worthwhile. It is original, thought provoking, often contrarian, and challenging. To read it is to expand one's intellect. I recommend it highly.
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