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God and the New Atheism: A Critical Response to Dawkins, Harris, and Hitchensby John F Haught
Synopses & Reviews
In God and the New Atheism, a world expert on science and theology gives clear, concise, and compelling answers to the charges against religion laid out in recent best-selling books by Richard Dawkins (The God Delusion), Sam Harris (The End of Faith), and Christopher Hitchens (God Is Not Great). For some, these "new atheists" appear to say extremely well what they believe to be wrong with religion. But, as John Haught shows, the treatment of religion in these books is riddled with logical inconsistencies, shallow misconceptions, and crude generalizations. Can God really be dismissed as a mere delusion? Is faith really the enemy of reason? And does religion really poison everything? God and the New Atheism offers a much-needed antidote to the extremist claims of scientific fundamentalism. This provocative and accessible little book will enable readers to see through the rhetorical fog of this recent phenomenon and come to a clearer understanding of the issues at stake in this crucial debate.
"The recent spate of books from atheists such as Richard Dawkins, Sam Harris and (most stridently) Christopher Hitchens has prompted many pundits and scholars to label the trend 'the New Atheism.' Haught uses the term, but argues that there is nothing really new about the New Atheism; it is instead a rehashing of antireligious arguments that are as old as the Enlightenment. In fact, Haught criticizes the New Atheism as being 'theologically unchallenging,' its all-or-nothing thinking representing 'about the same level of reflection on faith that one can find in contemporary creationist and fundamentalist literature.' Haught draws upon theologians such as Tillich, Bultmann, Ricoeur, McFague and Pannenberg to refute some of the New Atheists' most common contentions. Through most of Haught's book, his approach is straight theism, with the exclusively or specifically Christian arguments coming near the end. Although this book is more accessible than some of Haught's earlier theological work (e.g., Is Nature Enough?), it is still challenging and serious; readers will need to follow scientific, theological, philosophical and logical threads to keep up. The reward is worth it, however, as Haught lays out the fundamental issues clearly and without the vitriol that has characterized Hitchens et al. as well as many of their interlocutors." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
A world expert on science and theology gives clear, concise, and compelling answers to the charges against religion laid out in recent bestselling books by Richard Dawkins, Sam Harris, and Christopher Hitchens.
About the Author
John F. Haught is Senior Fellow in Science and Religion at the Woodstock Theological Center at Georgetown University in Washington, D. C. One of the world's leading thinkers in the field of theology and science, Haught was Chair and Professor in the Department of Theology at Georgetown from 1970 to 2005. An international lecturer and prolific author, his books include Christianity and Science, God After Darwin: A Theology of Evolution, and the prize-winning Deeper than Darwin: The Prospects for Religion in the Age of Evolution.
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