The Portable Atheist: Essential Readings for the Nonbeliever

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The Portable Atheist: Essential Readings for the Nonbeliever

Format:  Paperback,

499 pages

Publisher: Perseus Books Group

Publish Date: Nov 2007

ISBN-13: 9780306816086

ISBN-10: 0306816083

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The following content was provided by the publisher.
From the #1 "New York Times" best-selling author of "God Is Not Great," a provocative and entertaining guided tour of atheist and agnostic thought through the ages--with never-before-published pieces by Salman Rushdie, Ian McEwan, and Ayaan Hirsi Ali.Christopher Hitchens continues to make the case for a splendidly godless universe in this first-ever gathering of the influential voices--past and present--that have shaped his side of the current (and raging) God/no-god debate. With Hitchens as your erudite and witty guide, youll be led through a wealth of philosophy, literature, and scientific inquiry, including generous portions of the words of Lucretius, Benedict de Spinoza, Charles Darwin, Karl Marx, Mark Twain, George Eliot, Bertrand Russell, Emma Goldman, H. L. Mencken, Albert Einstein, Daniel Dennett, Sam Harris, Richard Dawkins, and many others well-known and lesser known. And theyre all set in context and commented upon as only Christopher Hitchens--"political and literary journalist extraordinaire" ("Los Angeles Times")--can. Atheist? Believer? Uncertain? No matter: "The Portable Atheist" will speak to you and engage you every step of the way.

Specifications

:
Publisher: Perseus Books Group
Publish Date: Nov 2007
ISBN-13: 9780306816086
ISBN-10: 0306816083
Format: Paperback
Number of Pages: 499
Shipping Weight (in pounds): 1.4
Product in Inches (L x W x H): 6.25 x 9.25 x 1.25

About the author

Biography of Hitchens, Christopher

Christopher Hitchens was born in Portsmouth, England on April 13, 1949. He was a contributing editor to Vanity Fair and wrote for numerous other publications throughout his lifetime. He was the author of numerous books including No One Left to Lie To, For the Sake of Argument, Prepared for the Worst, God Is Not Great, Hitch-22: A Memoir, and Arguably. He died due to complication from esophageal cancer on December 15, 2011 at the age of 62.

Chapter outline

Acknowledgments
Introduction
from De Rerum Natura (On the Nature of Things), Book I, Translated by W. Hannaford Brown
from Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam: A Paraphrase from Several Literal Translations by Richard Le Gallienne
Of Religion, from Leviathan
Theological-Political Treatise
The Natural History of Religion
Of Miracles
An Account of My Last Interview with David Hume, Esq.
A Refutation of Deism
Moral Influences in My Early Youth, From Autobiography
Contribution to the Critique of Hegel's Philosophy of Right
Evangelical Teaching
Autobiography
An Agnostic's Apology
Miracle
Thoughts of God, From Fables of Man
Bible Teaching and Religious Practice, From Europe and Elsewhere and A Pen Warmed Up In Hell
Author's Note to The Shadow Line
God's Funeral
The Philosophy of Atheism
A Letter on Religion
Why I Am An Unbeliever
Memorial Service
from The Future of an Illusion, Translated and edited by James Strachey
Selected Writings on Religion
from A Clergyman's Daughter
In Westminster Abbey
Monism and Religion
An Old Story
An Outline of Intellectual Rubbish
Aubade
Church Going
The Wandering Jew and the Second Coming
The Demon-Haunted World 218
The God Hypothesis
from Roger's Version
Conclusions and Implications, From The Miracle of Theism: Arguments for and against the Existence of God
Genesis Revisited: A Scientific Creation Story
That Undiscovered Country
Thank Goodness!
from A Farewell to God, A Personal Word
Questions to Ask Yourself
Why There Almost Certainly Is No God
Gerin Oil
Atheists for Jesus
from God: the Failed Hypothesis, Cosmic Evidence 311
A Working Definition of Religion, From "Breaking Which Spell?
If God Is Dead, Is Everything Permitted?
There Is No God
End of the World Blues
What About God? From Dreams of a Final Theory
Imagine There's No Heaven": A Letter to the Six Billionth World Citizen
The Koran
The Totalitarian Nature of Islam
In the Shadow of God, From The End of Faith
Can an Athiest Be a Fundamentalist? From Against All Gods
How (and Why) I Became an Infidel
Credits and Permissions
Index

Reviews

Review by Library Journal (2008-04-01)

Since the publication of his best-selling secularist manifesto, God Is Not Great: How Religion Poisons Everything, Hitchens has become a visible and vocal advocate, along with fellow atheists Richard Dawkins, Daniel Dennett, and Sam Harris, of a return to Enlightenment values and a rejection of religion. The Portable Atheist continues that agenda by collecting a diverse sampling of secularist literature that spans more than two millennia. Each selection includes a short introduction by Hitchens that explains its historical context, its significance, and its influence on the development of secular thought.

The 47 readings here represent a broad cross section of literature by nonbelievers, with selections from poets, novelists, journalists, philosophers, and scientists. Gathered here are many of the best-known secularists, from Lucretius and David Hume to Bertrand Russell and Carl Sagan. This collection also includes previously unpublished works by Salman Rushdie, Ian McEwan, and Ayaan Hirsi Ali. Nicholas Ball provides versatile and nuanced readings across multiple genres, from the lilting verse of Omar Khayyam's The Rubaiyat to the denser prose of Thomas Hobbes's Leviathan. Ball should capture the attention, if not the sympathies, of believers and unbelievers alike. Highly recommended for all general library collections, but particularly those with large religion, history, and philosophy holdings.

-Philip Bader, Pasadena, CA

(c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Review by Library Journal (2008-01-01)

Atheism's stock is high right now, as is Hitchens's, whose recent book, God Is Not Great, has given rise to much discussion and controversy. It is no surprise that Hitchens and a willing publisher might be intrigued by the possibility of cashing in on his recent success. The Portable Atheist, however, is a rather messy ragout of widely disparate readings--all provocative and entertaining but hardly a coherent statement. Lucretius, Thomas Jefferson, Emma Goldman, Albert Einstein, Charles Darwin, and many writers and thinkers as impressive as these all gave voice to their doubts, but as Hitchens does not seem to understand, they believed and disbelieved rather different things and argue from and for very different premises. The perceptive reader will feel much sorrow for the thousandfold human follies perpetrated in the name of religion and condemned here, but no case against God does The Portable Atheist make. Still, valuable for most collections.

(c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Book description

From the #1 New York Times best-selling author of God Is Not Great, a provocative and entertaining guided tour of atheist and agnostic thought through the ages--with never-before-published pieces by Salman Rushdie, Ian McEwan, and Ayaan Hirsi Ali. Christopher Hitchens continues to make the case for a splendidly godless universe in this first-ever gathering of the influential voices--past and present--that have shaped his side of the current (and raging). God/no-god debate. With Hitchens as your erudite and witty guide, you’ll be led through a wealth of philosophy, literature, and scientific inquiry, including generous portions of the words of Lucretius, Benedict de Spinoza, Charles Darwin, Karl Marx, Mark Twain, George Eliot, Bertrand Russell, Emma Goldman, H. L. Mencken, Albert Einstein, Daniel Dennett, Sam Harris, Richard Dawkins, and many others well-known and lesser known.

And they’re all set in context and commented upon as only Christopher Hitchens--“political and literary journalist extraordinaire” ( Los Angeles Times)--can. Atheist? Believer? Uncertain? No matter: The Portable Atheist will speak to you and engage you every step of the way.

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