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Dominion

The Making of the Western Mind
Narrated by: Mark Meadows, Tom Holland
Length: 22 hrs and 17 mins
Categories: History, European
4.5 out of 5 stars (8 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Christianity is the most enduring and influential legacy of the ancient world, and its emergence the single most transformative development in Western history. Even the increasing number in the West today who have abandoned the faith of their forebears, and dismiss all religion as pointless superstition, remain recognisably its heirs. Seen close up, the division between a sceptic and a believer may seem unbridgeable. Widen the focus, though, and Christianity's enduring impact upon the West can be seen in the emergence of much that has traditionally been cast as its nemesis: in science, in secularism and yes, even in atheism. 

That is why Dominion places the story of how we came to be what we are, and how we think the way that we do, in the broadest historical context. Ranging in time from the Persian invasion of Greece in 480 BC to the ongoing migration crisis in Europe today, and from Nebuchadnezzar to the Beatles, it explores just what it was that made Christianity so revolutionary and disruptive; how completely it came to saturate the mind-set of Latin Christendom; and why, in a West that has become increasingly doubtful of religion's claims, so many of its instincts remain irredeemably Christian. The aim is twofold: to make the listener appreciate just how novel and uncanny were Christian teachings when they first appeared in the world and to make ourselves, and all that we take for granted, appear similarly strange in consequence. We stand at the end-point of an extraordinary transformation in the understanding of what it is to be human: one that can be fully appreciated only by tracing the arc of its parabola over millennia.

©2019 Tom Holland (P)2019 Hachette Audio UK

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ad hoc hypothesis the modus operandi

good. decent narration, intresting tidbits.

bad. cheery picked examples to further the red line of christianity's bedrock values made a fundation of the west. Certainly a reasonable argument, this book does not challenge but seek only to proclaim. Spanning the scope of centuries, dynastic politics, war, plauge etc seems to all be whims of man when a random pope finally says no more sex for priests or challenge a monarch to whom appoints biachops. Anecdotal all the way.

0 of 7 people found this review helpful

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  • A time to question
  • 10-02-19

Thrilling, serious and timely

All things fall apart, the centre cannot hold...it often feels today. Our diverse liberal society is ‘tolerant’ and paradoxically judgemental, and does not really seem to understand its own rationale. Tom Holland’s book tells a compelling narrative which weaves together the paradoxes, the highs and the lows of our human story, constantly asking ‘who are we really?’ And he provides a historical, profound and clear answer. But challenges (implicitly) the reader to provide a better explanation.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • William Hayes
  • 10-04-19

wonderfully sprawling and controversial

This was really enjoyable, as much in the bits that I disagreed with as in the sections that I enjoyed.

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  • Paul.M.Fleming
  • 10-27-19

Dull as diswater

A whistlestop tour through two thousand years of the effect of christian belief systems on history,, that never slows down enough to be interesting.

0 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Helen I Moller
  • 10-30-19

Disappointed

I am not really equipped to write a review of this book because I have not fully read it. It contains a fundermental and glaring error that must colour the very nature of everything thereafter; I had high hopes of this book, but I am rather disappointed.
Not everyone would agree with my conclusions, so perhaps worth a read.

1 of 13 people found this review helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 09-28-19

Absolutely Brilliant

What a fantastic book / Audio could not stop listening. So much in there that I didn't even think about grown up as a Christian.
I'll be purchasing the book.

Thank you Tom