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Showing posts with the label religious liberty

Taking Out the “White Trash” A Book Review

WHITE TRASH The 400-Year Untold History    of Class in America Author: Nancy Isenberg 2016 Viking Isenberg states her purpose on page 2 of White Trash : “…by reevaluating the American historical experience in class terms, I expose what is too often ignored about American identity.” She adds a second aim. “I also want to make it possible to better appreciate the gnawing contradictions still present in modern American society.” Her major theme appears to be a persistent lack of equality since the early English settlements gained a foothold in America: “How does a culture that prizes equality of opportunity explain, or indeed accommodate, its persistently marginalized people?” She encourages Americans to “recognize the existence of our underclass.” And offers us a question to answer: “The puzzle of how white trash embodied this tension is one of the key questions the book presumes to answer.” As we might expect of from a history professor ( LSU ), Is

On Liberty and Tolerance- A Book Review

Liberty Bell stamp ON LIBERTY By John Stuart Mill    Reviewed by Geoffrey W. Sutton My occasion for re-reading On Liberty was the mention of Mill and Rawls by professor Brian Leiter in his lecture, “Why Tolerate Religion,” which he presented at Drury University. My joint interest in philosophy and psychology began during my undergraduate years. Mill’s book On Liberty is one I kept since taking a graduate course on Political Philosophy at the University of Missouri, where my psychology professors graciously allowed me to count philosophy courses toward my doctoral requirements. Philosophers have of course contributed much to an understanding of human nature, which is why I continue to read philosophy. As I look back at Mill’s writings, I see a man on the cusp of philosophy and science guiding thinkers toward empiricism whilst maintaining an eminently pragmatic stance. In a sense, I see him contributing hypotheses to social psychology and t

Sacred Causes --of war - A Book Review

Can a look back help predict the future of religious influence? SACRED CAUSES The Clash of Religion and Politics  from the Great War to the War on Terror By Michael Burleigh Reviewed by Geoffrey W. Sutton CHURCH and STATE News of the recent church-state skirmishes rippling across the Southern Christian U.S. States reminded me of Burleigh’s work, which I reviewed a few years ago. Additionally, the brutality of the identified Islamic state ripping heads from bodies, destroying women and children, exploding ancient sites, and pushing vulnerable noncombatants into the Mediterranean makes the author’s analysis even more worthy of a second look. What I find useful to the present church and state issues is Burleigh’s consideration of the role of the church in the various conflicts beginning with World War I and extending into the 21st Century. During the past hundred years, the primary European church was of course the Church of Rome—still claiming