Página InicialGruposDiscussãoMaisZeitgeist
Pesquisar O Sítio Web
Este sítio web usa «cookies» para fornecer os seus serviços, para melhorar o desempenho, para analítica e (se não estiver autenticado) para publicidade. Ao usar o LibraryThing está a reconhecer que leu e compreende os nossos Termos de Serviço e Política de Privacidade. A sua utilização deste sítio e serviços está sujeita a essas políticas e termos.
Hide this

Resultados dos Livros Google

Carregue numa fotografia para ir para os Livros Google.

Bearing False Witness: Debunking Centuries…
A carregar...

Bearing False Witness: Debunking Centuries of Anti-Catholic History (edição 2017)

por Rodney Stark (Autor)

MembrosCríticasPopularidadeAvaliação médiaDiscussões
1155186,002 (3.96)Nenhum(a)
"As we all know and as many of our well established textbooks have argued for decades, the Inquisition was one of the most frightening and bloody chapters in Western history, Pope Pius XII was anti-Semitic and rightfully called "Hitler's Pope," the Dark Ages were a stunting of the progress of knowledge to be redeemed only by the secular spirit of the Enlightenment, and the religious Crusades were an early example of the rapacious Western thirst for riches and power. But what if these long held beliefs were all wrong? In this stunning, powerful, and ultimately persuasive book, Rodney Stark, one of the most highly regarded sociologists of religion and bestselling author of The Rise of Christianity (HarperSanFrancisco 1997) argues that some of our most firmly held ideas about history, ideas that paint the Catholic Church in the least positive light are, in fact, fiction. Why have we held these wrongheaded ideas so strongly and for so long? And if our beliefs are wrong, what, in fact, is the truth? In each chapter, Stark takes on a well-established anti-Catholic myth, gives a fascinating history of how each myth became the conventional wisdom, and presents a startling picture of the real truth. For example, Instead of the Spanish Inquisition being an anomaly of torture and murder of innocent people persecuted for "imaginary" crimes such as witchcraft and blasphemy, Stark argues that not only did the Spanish Inquisition spill very little blood, but it was a major force in support of moderation and justice. Instead of Pope Pius XII being apathetic or even helpful to the Nazi movement, such as to merit the title, "Hitler's Pope," Stark shows that the campaign to link Pope Pius XII to Hitler was initiated by the Soviet Union, presumably in hopes of neutralizing the Vatican in post-World War II affairs. Pope Pius XII was widely praised for his vigorous and devoted efforts to saving Jewish lives during the war. Instead of the Dark Ages being understood as a millennium of ignorance and backwardness inspired by the Catholic Church's power, Stark argues that the whole notion of the "Dark Ages" was an act of pride perpetuated by anti-religious intellectuals who were determined to claim that theirs was the era of "Enlightenment." In the end, readers will not only have a more accurate history of the Catholic Church, they will come to understand why it became unfairly maligned for so long. Bearing False Witness is a compelling and sobering account of how egotism and ideology often work together to give us a false truth. "--"As we all know and as many of our well established textbooks have argued for decades, the Inquisition was one of the most frightening and bloody chapters in Western history, Pope Pius XII was anti-Semitic and rightfully called "Hitler's Pope," the Dark Ages were a stunting of the progress of knowledge to be redeemed only by the secular spirit of the Enlightenment, and the religious Crusades were an early example of the rapacious Western thirst for riches and power. But what if these long held beliefs were all wrong? In this stunning, powerful, and ultimately persuasive book, Rodney Stark, one of the most highly regarded sociologists of religion and bestselling author of The Rise of Christianity (HarperSanFrancisco 1997) argues that some of our most firmly held ideas about history, ideas that paint the Catholic Church in the least positive light are, in fact, fiction. Why have we held these wrongheaded ideas so strongly and for so long? And if our beliefs are wrong, what, in fact, is the truth? In each chapter, Stark takes on a well-established anti-Catholic myth, gives a fascinating history of how each myth became the conventional wisdom, and presents a startling picture of the real truth"--… (mais)
Membro:BlitheIngenue
Título:Bearing False Witness: Debunking Centuries of Anti-Catholic History
Autores:Rodney Stark (Autor)
Informação:Templeton Press (2017), Edition: First, 280 pages
Colecções:A sua biblioteca
Avaliação:
Etiquetas:Catholic theology, apologetics

Pormenores da obra

Bearing False Witness: Debunking Centuries of Anti-Catholic History por Rodney Stark

Nenhum(a)
A carregar...

Adira ao LibraryThing para descobrir se irá gostar deste livro.

Ainda não há conversas na Discussão sobre este livro.

Mostrando 5 de 5
If even a small part of this book is true, it will force you to rethink a lifetime of history you have taken for granted. I can’t tell yet whether I believe all or even most of the claims, but from now on I’ll be reading all history books more skeptically.

Much of the argument is based on the observation that for the past 500 years, Protestant cultures had incentives to portray Catholic history as negatively as possible. You could win fame and fortune, perhaps even employment at a prestigious job, if you showed something bad about Catholics and Catholic countries. During much of the 1500s and 1600s, newly-Protestant England was the enemy of Catholic Spain, so for patriotic reasons any voice of disapproval was amplified. Historians quote one another, so even if you were an atheist, you would find a sympathetic audience for anything you wrote negatively about pre-Protestant European history.

Here are a few of the eye-opening claims:

* There never was a “Dark Ages”. The term was coined and popularized by post-Renaissance anti-religious thinkers who wanted to exaggerate their own importance. In fact, Europe was constantly innovating and getting better after the Roman Empire fell.

* Anti-semitism was always condemned by the Catholic Church, which taught that Jews were God’s chosen people. There is little or no recorded violence against Jews for the first thousand years of Church history, and after that it was the Church who protected Jews. Anti-semitism was strongest in areas where the church was weakest.

* Galileo was punished for betrayal of his friendship with the Pope, not for making a scientific claim.

* The Crusades were fought to ensure access to the Holy Land by European Christians, who were regularly persecuted and killed on the pilgrimages they’d been making for a thousand years. Remember, the Holy Land was Christian by choice for 500 years before Muslim invaders forced them to convert.

* The Catholic Church condemned slavery throughout history. Even in the US, the Catholic-majority places (like Louisiana) saw higher manumission than Protestant majority states.

I'm eager to hear more, especially any rebuttals from historians who know more than I do, but I found the arguments compelling and definitely worth a followup. ( )
  richardSprague | Mar 22, 2020 |
As we all know and as many of our well established textbooks have argued for decades, the Inquisition was one of the most frightening and bloody chapters in Western history, Pope Pius XII was anti-Semitic and rightfully called "Hitler's Pope," the Dark Ages were a stunting of the progress of knowledge to be redeemed only by the secular spirit of the Enlightenment, and the religious Crusades were an early example of the rapacious Western thirst for riches and power. But what if these long held beliefs were all wrong?
In this stunning, powerful, and ultimately persuasive book, Rodney Stark, one of the most highly regarded sociologists of religion and bestselling author of The Rise of Christianity (HarperSanFrancisco 1997) argues that some of our most firmly held ideas about history, ideas that paint the Catholic Church in the least positive light are, in fact, fiction. Why have we held these wrongheaded ideas so strongly and for so long? And if our beliefs are wrong, what, in fact, is the truth?
In each chapter, Stark takes on a well-established anti-Catholic myth, gives a fascinating history of how each myth became the conventional wisdom, and presents a startling picture of the real truth. For example,Instead of the Spanish Inquisition being an anomaly of torture and murder of innocent people persecuted for "imaginary" crimes such as witchcraft and blasphemy, Stark argues that not only did the Spanish Inquisition spill very little blood, but it was a major force in support of moderation and justice.Instead of Pope Pius XII being apathetic or even helpful to the Nazi movement, such as to merit the title, "Hitler's Pope," Stark shows that the campaign to link Pope Pius XII to Hitler was initiated by the Soviet Union, presumably in hopes of neutralizing the Vatican in post-World War II affairs. Pope Pius XII was widely praised for his vigorous and devoted efforts to saving Jewish lives during the war.Instead of the Dark Ages being understood as a millennium of ignorance and backwardness inspired by the Catholic Church's power, Stark argues that the whole notion of the "Dark Ages" was an act of pride perpetuated by anti-religious intellectuals who were determined to claim that theirs was the era of "Enlightenment."In the end, readers will not only have a more accurate history of the Catholic Church, they will come to understand why it became unfairly maligned for so long. Bearing False Witness is a compelling and sobering account of how egotism and ideology often work together to give us a false truth. ( )
  aitastaes | Sep 9, 2019 |
Reading Stark's book, I kept asking myself who he thought would read this book refuting misinformation about the Catholic Church. People who might want to read it are almost certainly aware of the facts he cites while those who need to fact check toxic but dearly held falsehoods will almost certainly not read it. In the middle are a lot of people who probably don't worry about such things. To make matters worse, at times Stark set's up straw men to knock down, naming, for example, James Carroll, Karen Armstrong and Elaine Pagels without exploring the wider arc of their work--Armstrong particularly suffers for an old book about the Crusades--or considering the influence of their work--Carroll's book "Constantine's Sword" for example, is not credible as history other than his personal history.
Not recommended unless you are a rabid anti-Catholic who blames things like the fall of the Roman Empire on Catholicism. . ( )
  nmele | Feb 2, 2019 |
In this stunning, powerful, and ultimately persuasive book, Rodney Stark, one of the most highly regarded sociologists of religion and bestselling author of The Rise of Christianity (HarperSanFrancisco 1997) argues that some of our most firmly held ideas about history, ideas that paint the Catholic Church in the least positive light are, in fact, fiction. Why have we held these wrongheaded ideas so strongly and for so long? And if our beliefs are wrong, what, in fact, is the truth?
In each chapter, Stark takes on a well-established anti-Catholic myth, gives a fascinating history of how each myth became the conventional wisdom, and presents a startling picture of the real truth.
  StFrancisofAssisi | Aug 3, 2018 |
The motives of the author for writing this polemic against “anti-Catholic myths" do not appear to stem from any genuinely-held beliefs; the impression one gets is that he simply wants to further his reputation as someone who has a "new" and somewhat contrarian approach to religious history. One of the main accusations that the author makes against the perpetrators of these so-called myths is that they select and distort evidence. With this assertion he is hoisted with his own petard; you would expect an academic to deal honestly and fairly with the facts and his sources; but in his zeal to whitewash the Catholic Church of any wrongdoing, he cites only those that support his arguments and excludes any that would disprove them.

The arguments in his first essay “Sins of Antisemitism” are particularly specious. The church did not invent antisemitism, he claims, because hostile treatment of the Jews had been pervasive in the ancient world. This is contrary to most scholarly opinion, that all the empires that ruled Judea - Persian, Macedonian and Roman until 70 CE - implicitly or explicitly regarded the Jews' "ancient practices" - including both the Temple rites and the exclusivity of the Jewish God - as the "constitution" of the Judean or Jewish people. Until the Roman era, religion was not yet regarded as a separate form of identity, distinct from nationality or ethnicity. When, under the multi-national and multi-ethnic hegemony of the Roman empire, religion did become a relevant classification of its subjects - and later citizens – Judaism, unlike Christianity, was a permitted religion. Stark quotes the anti-Jewish remarks of a number of Greek and Roman writers as evidence of ancient antisemitism. His reference to Suetonius’ “Twelve Caesars” is a prime example of Stark’s careful selective use of evidence in order to support his argument; the emperor Tiberius did, as Stark reports, order the Jews in Rome to burn all their religious vestments and banished Jews from the city. What he does not reveal is that, according to Suetonius, the same decree applied to Egyptians and followers of other foreign cults; in other words, it was a general xenophobic action, rather than one directed specifically at Jews or their religion. In another example of so-called antisemitism that he gives, the emperor Titus’ imposition of a special tax on all Jews in the empire, he fails to mention that the fiscus judaicus was not a punishment simply for being Jewish, but for the Jewish revolt against Rome of 68-70 CE, or that the emperor Nerva abolished the tax, when he came to power in 96 CE.

The author’s defence of the anti-Jewish complexion of the gospels, as merely the criticism of one group of Jews by another group of coreligionists, is almost laughable. He characterizes it as “in-house prophetic criticism”, no different in kind from the polemics against other Jews made by Biblical prophets such as Isaiah. Anti-Christian texts in the Talmud and other rabbinical writings are cited as evidence of the other side of a lively debate between competing religious philosophies. His conclusion from all this, that the Church did not “translate the antagonisms of the New Testament into a warrant for anti-Semitic attacks”, completely ignores the role of Church Fathers, such as Ambrose of Milan or Augustine of Hippo, whose anti-Jewish interpretation of the gospels conditioned Christian attitudes and behavior towards Jews for centuries afterward. Even more striking is his omission to mention the institutionalized hostility towards Jews of the Roman-Byzantine state, the enforcement arm of the early church. Emperor Theodosius’ law code, promulgated in 438 CE which barred Jews from holding positions in the military and civil service and banned the building of new synagogues, can rightly be considered the “invention” of official antisemitism. This was replaced a 100 years later by Justinian’s codex which imposed even more severe restrictions on Jews, effectively making them non-citizens of the empire. In his history of Medieval Christianity, Kevin Madigan makes the point that, what was mandated in law was not necessarily prosecuted in practice; but he goes on to say “ Justinian formulated a view of Jews as second-class citizens, a view given a sacred imprimatur by later papal and ecclesiastical decrees.” What’s not anti-Semitic about this?

The Theodosian code also made paganism illegal; but that does not prevent Stark from arguing, in another essay which I have neither the knowledge nor the space to investigate here fully, against the accusation that Christianity brutally suppressed paganism. In this latter essay, in order to prove how paganism continued to flourish under their rule, the author includes a table showing how many of various emperors’ consular appointments were pagans. In the present essay, there is no such table reporting the appointment of Jewish consuls. Beyond the confines of the Byzantine empire, the early Church persecuted Jews there too; there was, for example, particularly vicious legislation in late 7th century CE Visigothic Spain, where all Jewish religious practices were banned and Jews reduced to the status of slaves.

Stark absolves the Church from any responsibility for the massacres of European Jews perpetrated by the Crusaders en route to the Holy Land. In another essay, “Crusading for Land, Loot and Converts”, he extensively leans on the expert opinion of Jonathan Riley-Smith, that the Crusades were not motivated by the expectation of material gain. However, he completely fails to mention this same Crusader expert’s opinion that “Popes and preachers, who had to present the theology of violence to ordinary Christian could never fully control the passions they aroused. A crusade was fought against those perceived to be the external and internal (my italics) foes of Christendom”. The massacre or forced conversion of Jews was perpetrated “with the aim of creating a uniformly Christian society by eliminating their religion.” Even if the horrific persecutions of the Jews during the Crusades had not been part of the Church’s plan, and a few clerics – notably Bernard of Clervaux – did try to prevent further such occurrences, that hardly absolves the Church from responsibility for the actions of a movement that it created and motivated. For both early and medieval church, religious conformity was paramount, as that consolidated its power; if this meant periodically purging both the practices of other religions and those who practiced them – of which, once pagans and non-orthodox Christian “heretics” had been dealt with, only the Jews persisted – that’s what they did.

Religious uniformity is also the issue he takes up in the second essay, “The Suppressed Gospels”. This amounts to a diatribe against the published works on the so-called gnostic gospels, such as The Secret Gospel of Thomas, The Gospel of Mary, The secret Book of John and The Gospel of Judas. These are all later gospels - from the second and third centuries - copies of which were discovered in Egypt and were often written in ancient Coptic; some of them were discovered as long ago as 1945, others more recently. They present alternative narratives about Jesus and other figures from the standard Christian Bible, they generally have very different religious philosophies from orthodox Christianity, and often deal with hidden secrets and cosmologies that will only be revealed to the Select – hence their description as gnostic. The fact that orthodox Christianity and the standard Christian Bible survived, while these lost works and the religious philosophies they represented did not, means that the latter were either suppressed by the Church, or that they just died out. The author strongly disputes the former, while advocating the latter argument, on the grounds that most of these later gospels had philosophies that were unappealing; he further claims that the philosophies presented by the gnostic gospels were more pagan than Christian. The opposition of the early Church to these gnostic philosophies, he claims, was no more than an exposure of their fallacies and essentially non-Christian nature. However, given the indisputable - but unmentioned by Stark - suppression by the Church of far less deviant varieties of early Christianity – Marcionism, Arianism, Monophysitism, etc – than the gnostics, there is no reason to give it the benefit of the doubt in the case of the latter. By definition, the imposition of orthodoxy means the exclusion of everything else; it is thus no coincidence that it was in the areas where Arianism held out longer – Lombard Italy and early Frankish Gaul – that Jews were protected and allowed to function as full members of society.

The scenario painted by Elaine Pagels and Karen Armstrong, in their book about the Gospel of Judas – systematically excoriated and misquoted by Stark – of a very varied early Christianity with many disparate voices, is far more in line with what we now believe about the development of Rabbinic Judaism, which emerged from the same milieu at around the same period. According to the traditional narrative, the Rabbis were the guardians of the single true strand of the Israelite religion that survived the destruction of the Jerusalem Temple. However, archaeological evidence for the existence of other strains of Judaism from the 3rd to the 6th centuries CE – probably strongly influenced by Hellenism - is both very extensive and highly suggestive. The Rabbis were the only ones whose literature survived to provide a narrative and, as the saying goes, history is written by the winners. Unlike the Orthodox Church, the Rabbis lacked the power of a state that would have allowed them to suppress the more syncretic varieties of Judaism; but they did not need to, as under the hostility of the Byzantine Church-State toward any non-orthodoxy – which included Judaism in all its forms - only the most coherent and single-mindedly led variety could survive.

The author predictably comes to the defence of Cardinal Eugenio Pacelli, later Pope Pius XII; he vigorously denies that Pacelli was in effect a collaborator of the Nazis – as he has been depicted in “Hitler’s Pope” by John Cornwell and by other authors – or that he had not spoken out against their systematic genocidal policy towards Jews, and had done little or nothing to assist Jews throughout the war. In the mass of material about Pacelli’s role during the Holocaust that has been published since then, it is very difficult to weigh up the validity of the totally contrasting arguments either defending or condemning him; each proponent quotes multiple sources to support his point of view. The fact that there have been leading Jewish figures – such as Chaim Weizman, quoted by Stark – who have publically praised Pacelli, does not vindicate the point of view of his defenders any more than the attacks of prominent Catholics prove his guilt. It is too easy for anyone who has not adequately and exhaustively researched the topic to come to the wrong conclusion; it is also too easy for someone with an agenda to find “evidence” to support a pre-determined conclusion. For example, one of the “proofs” of Pacelli’s outspoken opposition to nazism cited by Stark, is a sermon that he gave in Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris in 1937; in it he is supposed to have “identified Germany as ‘that noble and powerful Nation whom bad shepherds would lead astray into an ideology of race.’ ” Stark gets this quotation from Ronald Rychlak, a Vatican apologist, who in turn quotes a book by Ralph Stewart. For anyone interested in what Pacelli actually said at Notre Dame, the sermon can be found in full on line (in French) on the Notre Dame web site, In vain you will look there for the cited quotation; in fact Pacelli was at pains to avoid making political judgements, saying “..when the church raises its voice on the grand questions of the day.. it does not mean to favor or disfavor any particular side or political party..”. This does not prove that Pacelli wasn’t using his influence behind the scenes to ease the plight of the Jews under the nazis, but it does illustrate the author’s cavalier use of sources.

Some of the so-called myths that the author combats are straw-men; like the Protestant work ethic or the “imposition” of the Dark Ages, these are superficial readings of history that most people with any historical knowledge would have no problem in dismissing. They are merely there to add substance and distract from other “myths” where his arguments are more problematic. Stark is a sociologist, not a historian – and it shows – but for a book written by someone who claims the mantle of a scholar, the standard of scholarship is poor. In fact, the way that the first and last letters of the book’s title “Bearing False Witness”, are picked out in large “illuminated” capitals on the cover, tempt me to believe that it is all an elaborate joke. ( )
1 vote maimonedes | Oct 31, 2017 |
Mostrando 5 de 5
sem críticas | adicionar uma crítica
Tem de autenticar-se para poder editar dados do Conhecimento Comum.
Para mais ajuda veja a página de ajuda do Conhecimento Comum.
Título canónico
Título original
Títulos alternativos
Data da publicação original
Pessoas/Personagens
Locais importantes
Acontecimentos importantes
Filmes relacionados
Prémios e menções honrosas
Epígrafe
Dedicatória
Primeiras palavras
Citações
Últimas palavras
Nota de desambiguação
Editores da Editora
Autores de citações elogiosas (normalmente na contracapa do livro)
Língua original
DDC/MDS canónico

Referências a esta obra em recursos externos.

Wikipédia em inglês

Nenhum(a)

"As we all know and as many of our well established textbooks have argued for decades, the Inquisition was one of the most frightening and bloody chapters in Western history, Pope Pius XII was anti-Semitic and rightfully called "Hitler's Pope," the Dark Ages were a stunting of the progress of knowledge to be redeemed only by the secular spirit of the Enlightenment, and the religious Crusades were an early example of the rapacious Western thirst for riches and power. But what if these long held beliefs were all wrong? In this stunning, powerful, and ultimately persuasive book, Rodney Stark, one of the most highly regarded sociologists of religion and bestselling author of The Rise of Christianity (HarperSanFrancisco 1997) argues that some of our most firmly held ideas about history, ideas that paint the Catholic Church in the least positive light are, in fact, fiction. Why have we held these wrongheaded ideas so strongly and for so long? And if our beliefs are wrong, what, in fact, is the truth? In each chapter, Stark takes on a well-established anti-Catholic myth, gives a fascinating history of how each myth became the conventional wisdom, and presents a startling picture of the real truth. For example, Instead of the Spanish Inquisition being an anomaly of torture and murder of innocent people persecuted for "imaginary" crimes such as witchcraft and blasphemy, Stark argues that not only did the Spanish Inquisition spill very little blood, but it was a major force in support of moderation and justice. Instead of Pope Pius XII being apathetic or even helpful to the Nazi movement, such as to merit the title, "Hitler's Pope," Stark shows that the campaign to link Pope Pius XII to Hitler was initiated by the Soviet Union, presumably in hopes of neutralizing the Vatican in post-World War II affairs. Pope Pius XII was widely praised for his vigorous and devoted efforts to saving Jewish lives during the war. Instead of the Dark Ages being understood as a millennium of ignorance and backwardness inspired by the Catholic Church's power, Stark argues that the whole notion of the "Dark Ages" was an act of pride perpetuated by anti-religious intellectuals who were determined to claim that theirs was the era of "Enlightenment." In the end, readers will not only have a more accurate history of the Catholic Church, they will come to understand why it became unfairly maligned for so long. Bearing False Witness is a compelling and sobering account of how egotism and ideology often work together to give us a false truth. "--"As we all know and as many of our well established textbooks have argued for decades, the Inquisition was one of the most frightening and bloody chapters in Western history, Pope Pius XII was anti-Semitic and rightfully called "Hitler's Pope," the Dark Ages were a stunting of the progress of knowledge to be redeemed only by the secular spirit of the Enlightenment, and the religious Crusades were an early example of the rapacious Western thirst for riches and power. But what if these long held beliefs were all wrong? In this stunning, powerful, and ultimately persuasive book, Rodney Stark, one of the most highly regarded sociologists of religion and bestselling author of The Rise of Christianity (HarperSanFrancisco 1997) argues that some of our most firmly held ideas about history, ideas that paint the Catholic Church in the least positive light are, in fact, fiction. Why have we held these wrongheaded ideas so strongly and for so long? And if our beliefs are wrong, what, in fact, is the truth? In each chapter, Stark takes on a well-established anti-Catholic myth, gives a fascinating history of how each myth became the conventional wisdom, and presents a startling picture of the real truth"--

Não foram encontradas descrições de bibliotecas.

Descrição do livro
Resumo Haiku

Ligações Rápidas

Capas populares

Avaliação

Média: (3.96)
0.5
1 1
1.5
2
2.5 1
3 1
3.5
4 4
4.5
5 5

É você?

Torne-se num Autor LibraryThing.

 

Acerca | Contacto | LibraryThing.com | Privacidade/Termos | Ajuda/Perguntas Frequentes | Blogue | Loja | APIs | TinyCat | Bibliotecas Legadas | Primeiros Críticos | Conhecimento Comum | 160,291,254 livros! | Barra de topo: Sempre visível