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God-botherers and Other True-believers
Gandhi, Hitler, and the Religious Right
F. G. Bailey
244 pages, bibliog., index
ISBN 978-1-84545-512-5 $135.00/£99.00 Hb Published (May 2008)
eISBN 978-0-85745-001-2 eBook
“In this book, which is carefully reasoned, engagingly written, and resolutely grounded in systematic thinking – as well as seething with incredulity towards the politics of faith – one can sense the passion of Bailey’s academic conviction: that questions are the only true formulations of knowledge worth fighting for.” · JRAI
When reason fails to guide us in our everyday lives, we turn to faith, to religion; we close our minds; we reject austere reasoning. This rejection, which is a faith-based social and intellectual malignancy, has two unfortunate consequences: it blocks the way to knowledge that might enhance the quality of life and it opens the way to charlatans who exploit the faith of others. Examining two unquestionable malignancies of “the Christian Right” in present-day politics in the United States and the “secular religion” of Hitler’s National Socialism, as well as the third, more complex case of Gandhi, the author asserts that we need religion, but we also need to make sure it does no harm.
F. G. Bailey is an emeritus professor of anthropology at the University of California, San Diego, where he taught from 1972-1994. He was formerly the founding professor of anthropology at the University of Sussex, UK and has published fifteen books (two of them edited volumes).