Dimitrios Roussopoulos: Faith in Faithlessness

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Roussopoulos, Dimitrios. Faith in Faithlessness: An Anthology of Atheism (Montreal: Black Rose Books, 2008)

If your home library needs another book of atheist quotes (after Jack Huberman's The Quotable Atheist, Joan Konner's The Atheist Bible, and Christopher Hitchens' The Portable Atheist) then this is the one to get. Like Hitchens' book--and unlike the other two--this volume contains mostly lengthy excerpts rather than focusing on aphorisms.

There is quite a bit of overlap between Faith in Faithlessness and The Portable Atheist, but mostly in essays that are worth rereading (Spinoza's "Theologico-Political Treatise," Shelley's "Refutation of Deism," George Eliot's "Evangelical Teaching," Goldman's "Philosophy of Atheism," Marx's "Contribution to the Critique of Hegel's Philosophy of Right," and Van Doren's "Why I Am an Unbeliever" are all common to both volumes, along with contemporary pieces such as Dennett's "Thank Goodness" and Dawkins' "Why There Almost Certainly Is No God"). For example, this passage from Anatole France's "Miracle"

Happening to be at Lourdes, in August, I paid a visit to the grotto where innumerable crutches were hung up in token of a cure. My companion pointed to these trophies of the sick-room and hospital ward, and whispered in my ear:
One wooden leg would be more to the point.

(p. 93)

reminded me on this reading of the question posed by the website Why Won't God Heal Amputees? (Of course, verifiable proof of the efficacy of prayer--in an instance where there is no rational explanation--has been rather...lacking.)

The inclusion of other great works--such as Gore Vidal's brilliant "Monotheism and Its Discontents"--make this book more a necessity than a nicety for the well-read atheist. (If you're on the fence, consider this: Faith in Faithlessness is from Black Rose Books, an independent publisher that needs all the support we can provide.)

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This page contains a single entry by cognitivedissident published on January 31, 2009 11:22 PM.

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