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God Is Not Great : How Religion Poisons Everything - Christopher Hitchens

God Is Not Great

How Religion Poisons Everything

Paperback Published: 6th April 2009
ISBN: 9780446697965
Number Of Pages: 320

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In the tradition of Bertrand Russell's Why I Am Not a Christian and Sam Harris's recent bestseller, The End of Faith, Christopher Hitchens makes the ultimate case
against religion. With a close and erudite reading of the major religious texts, he documents the ways in which religion is a man-made wish, a cause of dangerous sexual repression, and a distortion of our origins in the cosmos. With eloquent clarity, Hitchens frames the argument for a more secular life based on science and reason, in which hell is replaced by the Hubble Telescope's awesome view of the universe, and Moses and the burning bush give way to the beauty and symmetry
of the double helix.

About the Author

Chistopher Hitchens is a widely published polemicist and frequent radio and TV commentator. He is a contributing editor to Vanity Fair and a visiting professor of liberal studies at the New School in New York.

Industry Reviews

"[Hitchens] has somehow turned out an atheist book that, whatever one's stance on divine providence, is thoroughly enjoyable...in its profane interrogation of the sacred, [it] achieves a kind of joyous impudence...His narrative leans briskly and unrelentingly forward, subverting an unsettling all kinds of complacencies, religious and otherwise."--Joseph Rago, Wall Street Journal "[An] impressive and enjoyable attack on everything so many people hold dear... Hitchens has outfoxed the Hitchens watchers by writing a serious and deeply felt book, totally consistent with his beliefs of a lifetime. And God should be flattered: unlike most of those clamoring for his attention, Hitchens treats him like an adult."--New York Times Book Review "If God intended reasonable men and women to worship Him without embarrassment, why did He create Christopher Hitchens? It was a fatal miscalculation. In God Is Not Great, Hitchens not only demonstrates that religion is man-made -- and made badly -- he laughs the whole monstrosity to rubble. This is a profoundly clever book, addressing the most pressing social issue of our time, by one of the finest writers in the land." "--"Sam Harris, Author of the New York Times bestsellers The End of Faith and Letter to a Christian Nation "Noted, often acerbic journalist Hitchens enters the fray. As his subtitle indicates, his premise is simple. Not only does religion poison everything, which he argues by explaining several ways in which religion is immoral, but the world would be better off without religion. ... With such chapter titles as "Religion Kills" and "Is Religion Child Abuse?" Hitchens intends to provoke, but he is not mean-spirited and humorless. Indeed, he is effortlessly witty and entertaining as well as utterly rational." " -- Booklist "** starred review** "Do yourself a favor and skip the Dawkins and Harris; they're smug, turgid, and boring, with all the human feeling of a tax return. Read Hitchens instead. Test your faith severely or find a champion for your feelings, but read Hitchens. It's a tendentious delight, a caustic and even brilliant book. And with the title alone, he takes his life in his hands, which right there has got to be some proof of his thesis. And so, thank God for Christopher Hitchens." --"Esquire" "Hitchens, one of our great political pugilists, delivers the best of the recent rash of atheist manifestos. The same contrarian spirit thatmakes him delightful reading as a political commentator, even (or especially) when he's completely wrong, makes him an entertaining huckster prosecutor once he has God placed in the dock. Hitchens's one-liners bear the marks of considerable sparring practice with believers.... this is salutary reading as a means of culling believers' weaker arguments." --"Publishers Weekly " Praise for Christopher Hitchens: "America's foremost literary pugilist." --"The Village Voice" "From the Hardcover edition."

Great book!


Amazing book. That guy who gave it 1/5 is clearly mad because of his close mindedness.

Sydney, AU


fantastic book


a fanatstic book and an eye opener for religious people.gives a good over view from the now days world.every sentence makes sense!!!



Weak and Biased


A poorly written, trying too hard text with little supporting information.



An infectious read


Compelling and thoughtful read about the effects of religion on everything! An unspoken truth that is masterfully presented by the late Christopher Hitchens and as usual, presents an intellectually sound case. A bible of sorts for atheism and a possible eye opener for religious people. A must read for everyone.

Peakhurst, NSW


A must read! Religious or Not.


This was a marvelous book. I finished reading the God Delusion earlier this year which was also excellent. I think some people might appreciate Hitchen's work more though because it's from a writers perspective. While I enjoy Biology and understand it, some science in the God Delusion went over my head. Hitchens world experience, skill of writing and wit also gives us a much more overall thorough study of religion. I was actually surprised how unbiased this was, Hitchens gives religion it's due credit when it has earnt it and has genuine appreciation for the art, poetry and literature inspired by theology. He does however remind us that the terrible deeds of religion far exceed the good and that the good actions of people does not prove their divine claims.

Noraville, NSW, Australia.


God Is Not Great

4.2 5


One Putting It Mildly 1
Two Religion Kills 15
Three A Short Digression on the Pig; or, Why Heaven Hates Ham 37
Four A Note on Health, to Which Religion Can Be Hazardous 43
Five The Metaphysical Claims of Religion Are False 63
Six Arguments from Design 73
Seven Revelation: The Nightmare of the "Old Testament 97
Eight The "New" Testament Exceeds the Evil of the "Old" One 109
Nine The Koran Is Borrowed from Both Jewish and Christian Myths 123
Ten The Tawdriness of the Miraculous and the Decline of Hell 139
Eleven "The Lowly Stamp of Their Origin": Religion's Corrupt Beginnings 155
Twelve A Coda: How Religions End 169
Thirteen Does Religion Make People Behave Better? 173
Fourteen There Is No "Eastern" Solution 195
Fifteen Religion as an Original Sin 205
Sixteen Is Religion Child Abuse? 217
Seventeen An Objection Anticipated: The Last-Ditch "Case" Against Secularism 229
Eighteen A Finer Tradition: The Resistance of the Rational 253
Nineteen In Conclusion: The Need for a New Enlightenment 277
Afterword 285
Acknowledgments 295
References 297
Index 305
Reading Group Guide 319

ISBN: 9780446697965
ISBN-10: 0446697966
Audience: General
Format: Paperback
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 320
Published: 6th April 2009
Publisher: Time Warner Trade Publishing
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 20.32 x 12.7  x 1.91
Weight (kg): 0.27

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