'When you explore older atheisms, you will find some of your firmest convictions - secular or religious - are highly questionable. If this prospect disturbs you, what you are looking for may be freedom from thought.'
For a generation now, public debate has been corroded by a shrill, narrow derision of religion in the name of an often very vaguely understood 'science'. John Gray's stimulating and extremely enjoyable new book describes the rich, complex world of the atheist tradition, a tradition which he sees as in many ways as rich as that of religion itself, as well as being deeply intertwined with what is so often crudely viewed as its 'opposite'.
The result is a book that sheds an extraordinary and varied light on what it is to be human and on the thinkers who have, at different times and places, battled to understand this issue.
About the Author
John Gray is the author of many critically acclaimed books, including The Silence of Animals, The Immortalization Commission, Black Mass, and Straw Dogs. A regular contributor to The New York Review of Books, he has been a professor of politics at Oxford, a visiting professor at Harvard and Yale, and a professor of European thought at the London School of Economics. He now writes full-time.
A highly readable, fascinating book that jerks the debate on religion versus atheism right out of its crusted rut into the light of serious intellectual scrutiny * Observer *
Pithy and revelatory -- Christopher Bellaigue * Financial Times *