Christianity: A Global HistoryPaperback
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- Publisher: Penguin Books Ltd
- Format: Paperback | 704 pages
- Dimensions: 129mm x 198mm x 42mm | 473g
- Publication date: 5 April 2001
- Publication City/Country: London
- ISBN 10: 014025711X
- ISBN 13: 9780140257113
- Illustrations note: facsimiles, portraits
- Sales rank: 176,637
A monumental new history of Christianity from its beginnings as a persecuted cult, up to its present day international diversity. 'A model of condensation without simplification' - J.M Coetzee 'Clear and balanced. A triumph of compression...invaluable as a work of reference for students' - Karen Armstrong, "Times". 'A new and ambitious concept in presenting Christian history...a triumph. Never before, I suspect, has this cavalcade of thinkers been presented in a manner which so successfully combines depth, breadth, and succinctness' - Gerard Noel, "Catholic Herald".
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DAVID CHIDESTER is Professor of Comparative Religion at the University of Cape Town. He is the author of many award-winning books (American Academy of Religion Award for Excellence) on Christianity and Comparative Religion.
"'A model of condensation without simplification' - J.M Coetzee 'Clear and balanced. A triumph of compression... invaluable as a work of reference for students' - Karen Armstrong, Times 'A new and ambitious concept in presenting Christian history...a triumph. Never before, I suspect, has this cavalcade of thinkers been presented in a manner which so successfully combines depth, breadth, and succinctness' - Gerard Noel, Catholic Herald"
To distil the entire history of Christianity into one (admittedly hefty) volume is a challenge that requires a special kind of writer. Professor of Comparative Religion at the University of Cape Town, Chidester writes like a novelist to bring this huge subject to life. Starting with the atmosphere of Judaism in an Israel under Roman rule which Jesus and his first followers lived in, he moves us through the historical Jesuses (there are differing versions, each as difficult to prove as the other) and Paul, who worked hard to expand upon some of Jesus's teachings and place him in a historical context, right through to the writings of 6th-century Dionysius the Areopagite, 13th/14th-century Renaissance man Dante and 17th-century new American Puritan Peter Bulkeley, the Great Schism, the Reformation and Vatican II. Covering vast terrain with seeming ease, this is fascinating for anyone of any religion or none, placing Christianity in context with the world religions it exists alongside. A brilliantly-written, erudite book. (Kirkus UK)
Table of contents
Part 1 Ancient origins: beginnings; Jesus; Christ; Christians; churches; martyrs; Christian empire; holiness; faith and reason; power. Part 2 Historical transitions: Christendom; hierarchy; objects; scholars; mystics; heretics; Mary; Renaissance; Reformation; Europe. Part 3 Global transformations: new world; holy Russia; American Zion; African prophets; Asian heavens; Hindu Christians; Christian cargo; Holocaust; Cold War; new world order.