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Victory of Reason de Stark
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Victory of Reason

de Stark

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5521132,138 (3.99)6
Many books have been written about the success of the West, analyzing why Europe was able to pull ahead of the rest of the world by the end of the Middle Ages. Here, sociologist Stark advances a revolutionary, controversial idea: that Christianity and its related institutions are, in fact, directly responsible for the most significant intellectual, political, scientific, and economic breakthroughs of the past millennium. In Stark's view, what has propelled the West is not the tension between secular and nonsecular society, nor the pitting of science and the humanities against religious belief. Christian theology, Stark asserts, is the very font of reason: While the world's other great belief systems emphasized mystery, obedience, or introspection, Christianity alone embraced logic and reason as the path toward enlightenment, freedom, and progress.--From publisher description.… (mais)
Membro:gestwickiacademy
Título:Victory of Reason
Autores:Stark
Informação:Publisher Unknown
Coleções:Sonlight
Avaliação:
Etiquetas:z-530, sonlight, homeschool

Detalhes da Obra

The Victory of Reason: How Christianity Led to Freedom, Capitalism, and Western Success de Rodney Stark

Adicionado recentemente porSavioKocherry, BroadmoorBC.Library, BiblioCSA, letocq, biblioteca privada, rindie09, tcg17321, JensenPelo, BrookinsLibrary

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» Veja também 6 menções

Mostrando 1-5 de 10 (seguinte | mostrar todas)
"The Soviets could get rockets into orbit but couldn't get reliable onions to Moscow."

Deus Vult
--Gottfried ( )
  gottfried_leibniz | Apr 5, 2018 |
"The Soviets could get rockets into orbit but couldn't get reliable onions to Moscow."

Deus Vult
--Gottfried ( )
  gottfried_leibniz | Apr 5, 2018 |
recommended by Breakpoint commentary.

The first two chapters were very good and really made the thesis case. The next three were an interesting political, industrial, and economic history of Europe, but rarely even refereced the role of Christianity in these developments. The seventh chapter used the new world colonies as an interesting reflection of Europe to underscore the point. ( )
  gpaisley | Jun 18, 2016 |
Stark sets out to challenge anthropologists like Jared Diamond who contend that Europeans rose to prominence mainly out of geographic factors in their favor. Stark's hypothesis is that Christian thinking-- forward looking thought towards progress and in favor of basic equality and property rights-- led to European development. That while the decline of the Roman Empire is something historians have lamented in centuries past, it was precisely the catalyst that freed up individuals to become entrepreneurs. Stark makes the point that Max Weber's protestant work ethic hypothesis is a myth--capitalism existed long before protestantism.

In short, Stark thinks like an economic historian and shows that it's the incentives that matter. I thought Ferguson's Ascent of Money (my review) did a good job of showing the development of basic finance and economic thought. But Stark goes further back then Ferguson did, and does a much better job. Ferguson's book was a bestseller and got a PBS special. Stark's book won't.

The problem I have with Stark's book is that the links he makes to Christianity being a catalyst for economic development come across rather weakly. Early church fathers frowned on lending and commercial activity. There was a long period where the Catholic church looked more favorably on these activities, and then after the Protestant Reformation the Catholic church reverted back to opposing those activities and preserving its sovereignty. So, the church has played it both ways.

But if you can link Christian thinking to equality-- no king has any more right to your property than you because God shows no favoritism-- then you have the basis for property rights, which is the basis for capitalism.

This book was recommended to me by my dean, and then someone referred me to Horizon Community Church in Cincinnati, where the pastor was preaching a sermon series supposedly inspired by the book. So, it was a must-read. I'm requiring it for the Winterfest course I'm teaching on the history of economic and financial thought.

In all, I give this book 3.5 stars out of 5. Namely because I'd bet that someone has some good arguments to oppose Stark. But the book is an easy read and is quite entertaining and informative. I am humbled by how much I learned from it. ( )
  justindtapp | Jun 3, 2015 |
Ce livre est américain, cela se voit tout de suite : dans le titre, dans le ton, dans la manière d'enchaîner les idées, dans l'impressionnante source documentaire donnée en annexe. Cela pourrait en agaçer plus d'un : américain, pro-occidental, défenseur du christianisme, apologue du libéralisme et du capitalisme, promoteur de la liberté politique... Cela ne fleure pas bon son bobo multiculturel parisien ! Donc, amis lecteurs, entrez dans ce livre en toute connaissance de cause et si l'urticaire vous gagne, ne dites pas que vous n'étiez pas au courant.

Ce livre a l'avantage de présenter dans une grande synthèse et à partir d'exemples très pratiques les raisons du succès occidental dans le domaine du commerce et de la liberté politique. Bien entendu, il ne s'agit pas d'entrer dans les détails dans un ouvrage de quelques centaines de pages mais les amateurs pourront se référer utilement à la bibliographie conséquente proposée par l'auteur. Loin d'être rébarbatif, ce livre se lit très facilement et emmène le lecteur sur des éclairages de l'histoire qui battent en brêche les poncifs du siècle passé. La défense la plus farouche de l'auteur est celle du Moyen-Age, vu par beaucoup de nos contemporains comme étant un âge sombre, à la limite entre le "Seigneur des anneaux" et "Eragon", colorisé par des décennies d'analyse très IIIème république anti-monarchique et laïcarde à outrance.

Même si l'on aurait souhaité avoir plus de bases théoriques et théologiques sur la conception de la liberté économique et politique promue par l'Eglise à la chute de l'Empire romain, les exemples mis en avant sont là : l'Occident, par le biais du christianisme, a bénéficié de la liberté et du progrès alors que les autres civilisations progressaient moins rapidement.

La démonstration dénonce également (très américain !) les régimes autoritaires du passé qui ont freiné, par des mesures protectionnistes, l'enrichissement des populations. Tout le monde passe à la moulinette et surtout l'Espagne du Siècle d'Or, puis la France de la monarchie absolue et bonapartiste. Avouons que si l'auteur bénéficie d'une certaine sympathie, les raccourcis opérés laissent parfois le lecteur un peu décontenançé.

L'avantage de ce livre, au final, est d'avoir une vision de l'histoire qui : sorte un peu du nombrilisme franco-républicain ; met sur un même plan la liberté religieuse et la liberté économique ; réconcilie les chrétiens avec les affaires du monde. Cela change de la lecture marxiste de l'histoire, c'est sûr ! ( )
  Veilleur_de_nuit | Jan 25, 2011 |
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To the prospect that this work should be culturally influential, or that the Western world should experience a long-term religious revival, the only rational response is: God forbid.
 
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Many books have been written about the success of the West, analyzing why Europe was able to pull ahead of the rest of the world by the end of the Middle Ages. Here, sociologist Stark advances a revolutionary, controversial idea: that Christianity and its related institutions are, in fact, directly responsible for the most significant intellectual, political, scientific, and economic breakthroughs of the past millennium. In Stark's view, what has propelled the West is not the tension between secular and nonsecular society, nor the pitting of science and the humanities against religious belief. Christian theology, Stark asserts, is the very font of reason: While the world's other great belief systems emphasized mystery, obedience, or introspection, Christianity alone embraced logic and reason as the path toward enlightenment, freedom, and progress.--From publisher description.

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