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How the West Really Lost God: A New Theory of Secularization

Condition: BRAND NEW
ISBN: 9781599474663
Author(s): Mary Eberstadt
Format: Paperback
Year: 2014
Publisher: Templeton Foundation Press
Dimensions: 152 x 226 x 20 (w x l x h)
Pages: 257

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Description:
In this magisterial work, leading cultural critic Mary Eberstadt delivers a powerful new theory about the decline of religion in the Western world. The conventional wisdom is that the West first experienced religious decline, followed by the decline of the family. Eberstadt turns this standard account on its head. Marshalling an impressive array of research, from fascinating historical data on family decline in pre-Revolutionary France to contemporary popular culture both in the United States and Europe, Eberstadt shows that the reverse has also been true: the undermining of the family has further undermined Christianity itself. Drawing on sociology, history, demography, theology, literature, and many other sources, Eberstadt shows that family decline and religious decline have gone hand in hand in the Western world in a way that has not been understood before--that they are, as she puts it in a striking new image summarizing the book's thesis, 'the double helix of society, each dependent on the strength of the other for successful reproduction.' In sobering final chapters, Eberstadt then lays out the enormous ramifications of the mutual demise of family and faith in the West. While it is fashionable in some circles to applaud the decline both of religion and the nuclear family, there are, as Eberstadt reveals, enormous social, economic, civic, and other costs attendant on both declines. Her conclus
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