It's Raining Books Sale
 
 

Recently Viewed clear list


Interviews | September 2, 2014

Jill Owens: IMG David Mitchell: The Powells.com Interview



David MitchellDavid Mitchell's newest mind-bending, time-skipping novel may be his most accomplished work yet. Written in six sections, one per decade, The Bone... Continue »
  1. $21.00 Sale Hardcover add to wish list

    The Bone Clocks

    David Mitchell 9781400065677

spacer
Qualifying orders ship free.
$7.95
Used Hardcover
Ships in 1 to 3 days
Add to Wishlist
Qty Store Section
1 Hawthorne Religion Comparative- General
1 Local Warehouse Christianity- Religious Orders

More copies of this ISBN

The Spiral Staircase

by

The Spiral Staircase Cover

ISBN13: 9780375413186
ISBN10: 0375413189
Condition: Standard
Dustjacket: Standard
All Product Details

Only 2 left in stock at $7.95!

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Karen Armstrong begins this spellbinding story of her spiritual journey with her departure in 1969 from the Roman Catholic convent she had entered seven years before — hoping, but ultimately failing, to find God. She knew almost nothing of the changed world to which she was returning, and she was tormented by panic attacks and inexplicable seizures.

Armstrong's struggle against despair was further fueled by a string of discouragements — failed spirituality, doctorate, and jobs; fruitless dealings with psychiatrists. Finally, in 1976, she was diagnosed with epilepsy, given proper treatment, and released from her "private hell." She then began the writing career that would become her true calling, and as she focused on the sacred texts of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam, her own inner story began to emerge. Without realizing it, she had embarked on a spiritual quest, and through it she would eventually experience moments of transcendence — the profound fulfillment that she had not found in long hours of prayer as a young nun.

Powerfully engaging, often heartbreaking, but lit with bursts of humor, The Spiral Staircase is an extraordinary history of self.

Review:

"Even among readers who embrace doctrines Armstrong dismisses (such as the reality of a personal God), this candid memoir will clarify thinking about the search for the sacred." Bryce Christensen, Booklist

Review:

"The Spiral Staircase [is] a story about becoming human, being recognized, finally recognizing oneself....More than anything, it fills the reader with hope — not the sappy, uplifting kind but the sort that comes from the very best fairy tales." Carolyn See, The Washington Post

Review:

"An introspective, decidedly un-cheery work that seeks to set the author's record straight....Well-written and relentlessly self-aware." Kirkus Reviews

Review:

"A deeply moving account of a serious and large-hearted life. The book rings like the stroke of a bell — that clear, true tone. And it summons every reader to do the same." James Carroll, author of Constantine's Sword

Review:

"I loved this powerful and moving account, and read it nonstop." Elaine Pagels, author of Beyond Belief: The Secret Gospel of Thomas

Review:

"An engaging story of her own spiritual journey by contemporary religion's foremost public intellectual....[C]andid, witty, insightful, and moving. A book that teaches as it entertains." Marcus J. Borg, author of The Heart of Christianity

Review:

"A moving, insightful memoir... compulsively readable." Library Journal

Review:

"A minor masterpiece of dry, acerbic autobiography." Elle

Synopsis:

Armstrong begins this spellbinding story of her spiritual journey with her departure in 1969 from the Roman Catholic convent she had entered seven years before — hoping, but failing, to find God. Powerfully engaging, often heartbreaking, but lit with bursts of humor, The Spiral Staircase is an extraordinary history of self.

About the Author

Karen Armstrong is the author of numerous other books on religious affairs, including A History of God, The Battle for God, Through the Narrow Gate, Holy War, Islam, and Buddha. Her work has been translated into forty languages. She is also the author of three television documentaries and took part in Bill Moyers?s television series Genesis. Since September 11, 2001, she has been a frequent contributor to conferences, panels, newspapers, periodicals, and throughout the media on both sides of the Atlantic on the subject of Islam. She lives in London.

What Our Readers Are Saying

Add a comment for a chance to win!
Average customer rating based on 1 comment:

Luz K, April 13, 2010 (view all comments by Luz K)
I found this book so compelling that I read its 300 pages in two days. People who have struggled with unfair dismissals, disappointment in religion as it is taught and practiced, disbelief, doubt and low self-esteem will find much to think about and to inspire. Many pages contain jewels of thought and brilliant insights. For the first time I understand some of the lack of compassion in employment situations that I have experienced from Roman Catholic clergy and women religious whom I otherwise respected, because as Armstrong writes on page 186, "... how could we have loved our neighbors and our sisters in religion when we had been taught to despise ourselves?"
Karen Armstrong's account of struggle, of overcoming difficulty and then being able to grow and use her great gifts are particularly helpful to one who has been out of work and seeking what is next. She offers much insight about why it matters that we continue to grow in compassion, understanding and "right practice" as we live in contentious and cruel times. Now as the church hierarchy again circles the wagons against those who seek to end its protections of clergy who have committed or covered up crimes against children, I found her insights particularly perceptive.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
(18 of 22 readers found this comment helpful)

Product Details

ISBN:
9780375413186
Author:
Armstrong, Karen
Publisher:
Random House
Location:
New York
Subject:
Religious
Subject:
Literary
Subject:
Spirituality - Women's
Subject:
Ex-nuns
Subject:
Armstrong, Karen
Copyright:
Edition Number:
1st ed.
Series Volume:
32
Publication Date:
March 2004
Binding:
Hardcover
Language:
English
Pages:
336
Dimensions:
8.48x6.02x1.23 in. 1.19 lbs.

Other books you might like

  1. The Tulip and the Pope
    Used Hardcover $4.95
  2. Vows: The Story of a Priest, a Nun,... Used Hardcover $3.95
  3. Runaway: Stories Used Hardcover $4.95
  4. Goya Used Hardcover $15.95
  5. The Forest Lover
    Used Trade Paper $2.95
  6. Reading Lolita in Tehran: A Memoir...
    Used Trade Paper $4.50

Related Subjects

Biography » Religious
Religion » Christianity » Religious Orders
Religion » Comparative Religion » General

The Spiral Staircase Used Hardcover
0 stars - 0 reviews
$7.95 In Stock
Product details 336 pages Alfred A. Knopf - English 9780375413186 Reviews:
"Review" by , "Even among readers who embrace doctrines Armstrong dismisses (such as the reality of a personal God), this candid memoir will clarify thinking about the search for the sacred."
"Review" by , "The Spiral Staircase [is] a story about becoming human, being recognized, finally recognizing oneself....More than anything, it fills the reader with hope — not the sappy, uplifting kind but the sort that comes from the very best fairy tales."
"Review" by , "An introspective, decidedly un-cheery work that seeks to set the author's record straight....Well-written and relentlessly self-aware."
"Review" by , "A deeply moving account of a serious and large-hearted life. The book rings like the stroke of a bell — that clear, true tone. And it summons every reader to do the same."
"Review" by , "I loved this powerful and moving account, and read it nonstop."
"Review" by , "An engaging story of her own spiritual journey by contemporary religion's foremost public intellectual....[C]andid, witty, insightful, and moving. A book that teaches as it entertains."
"Review" by , "A moving, insightful memoir... compulsively readable."
"Review" by , "A minor masterpiece of dry, acerbic autobiography."
"Synopsis" by , Armstrong begins this spellbinding story of her spiritual journey with her departure in 1969 from the Roman Catholic convent she had entered seven years before — hoping, but failing, to find God. Powerfully engaging, often heartbreaking, but lit with bursts of humor, The Spiral Staircase is an extraordinary history of self.
spacer
spacer
  • back to top
Follow us on...




Powell's City of Books is an independent bookstore in Portland, Oregon, that fills a whole city block with more than a million new, used, and out of print books. Shop those shelves — plus literally millions more books, DVDs, and gifts — here at Powells.com.