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The Age of Reason: From the Wars of Religion to the French Revolution, 1570-1789 (Baker History of the Church) [Hardcover]

By Meic Pearse (Author)
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Item Specifications...

Pages   464
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 9.1" Width: 6.1" Height: 1.3"
Weight:   1.85 lbs.
Binding  Hardcover
Release Date   Nov 30, 2006
Publisher   Baker Publishing Group
ISBN  0801012783  
EAN  9780801012785  

Availability  0 units.

Item Description...
The Baker History of the Church series is an accessible and authoritative series that sheds light on the roots of the faith, the foundations of the church, and the sweeping changes occurring during the Reformation. The fifth volume, The Age of Reason, covers the period AD 1570-1789. From the reign of Queen Elizabeth I through the Enlightenment and into the beginning of the French Revolution, the church underwent incredible changes and lost considerable power over the governments of the European continent. The churches of the East were living under Muslim rule and withering slowly. And in the Americas the church took on new forms and marked the beginning of a distinctive experience of Christianity in the New World. Meic Pearse helps pastors, students, and laypeople make sense of it all.

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More About Meic Pearse

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! Meic Pearse is the author of Why the Rest Hates the West, one of the most talked-about books of 2004-2005. Originally from Britain, Pearse earned his master's and doctoral degrees from the University of Oxford. Currently living in the United States and Croatia, Pearse is assistant professor of history at Houghton College, New York. ABOUT THE EDITORS John D. Woodbridge is research professor of church history and the history of Christian thought at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School in Deerfield, Illinois. David F. Wright is professor of patristic and Reformed Christianity at the University of Edinburgh, Scotland. Tim Dowley has written and edited many books, including The Lion Handbook to the History of Christianity. He lives in Covent Garden, London.

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Product Categories
1Books > Subjects > History > Europe > France > General   [7855  similar products]
2Books > Subjects > History > Europe > France > Revolution   [344  similar products]
3Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Church History > General   [6817  similar products]

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Reviews - What do our customers think?
OK, but I won't be using it for my course  Jun 26, 2008
I've just finished reading this book in search of suitable textbooks for a university-level course on the history of Christianity in the Early Modern period.

As the title for this review will suggest, I have decided that I won't be using it, and with stick with stick for the moment with Cragg's now dated and fairly Anglo-centric "Church in the Ages of Reason," while waiting in hope for "Early Modern Christianity" in the series I.B. Tauris History of the Christian Church.

So why? First of all, there is considerable overlap in subject matter with the previous book in the series "Reform and Conflict." I understand why the authors of the two books might want to work with the periods they do, but I'm not sure that the two accounts of, e.g. missions, confessionalisation and the Thirty Years' War are so different that we need both of them. These are text books after all. Secondly, and I concede this will sound a bit mean spirited, I find the written style slightly irritating. I suspect, the frequent bon mots, and asides in which the author moralises or draws interesting parallels with present events work well in the class room, but I have to admit that after a while I just got irritated with all the avuncular nose-tapping. I suspect, too, that it will date very quickly. Finally, there are points at which this wit risks slipping into inaccuracy. For example, p. 58 informs us: "The Roman Church, it will be remembered, was in the habit of compensating its own priests for their enforced celibacy by reserving the chalice only for them." I hope this is just a wry aside, because factually, it is just plain wrong. Despite the book's title the Enlightenment is poorly covered.

Still, if you're planning to teach a Church History course that begins after the Reformation, then this textbook might be a decent bet. Like the other books in the Baker/Monarch series, it has good geographical and denominational coverage -- far better than the now dated and extremely Anglo-centric Cragg. Pearse is particularly strong on Eastern European Christianity. Although the publisher seems to specialise in Evangelical Protestant literature, the author tries, usually successfully, to give measured coverage to Roman Catholicism (though it should be said that, like most Anglophone textbooks, this is primarily a history of Protestantism).

Finally, I also admit, that for all my miserabilism about the book's written style, I suspect my students might enjoy it. So take the sour comments of that students' lecturer with a pinch of salt.
Five volumes versus three  Apr 7, 2007
The last two titles in the five-volume The Baker History of the Church series appear this year; Age of Reason by Meic Pearse, and The Medieval Church: Christianity in the Age of Princes And Peasants, AD 600-1450 (Baker History of the Church). This series is intended for college-level courses, and superior (at twice the page count but more than double the retail price [$150 versus $60)] to the two-volume effort by Everett Ferguson Church History Volume One: From Christ to Pre-Reformation: The Rise and Growth of the Church in Its Cultural, Intellectual, and Political Context and Volume Two: Church History (Zondervan, 2005, 2007). Ferguson tends towards a dependency on older secondary sources, a commonplace caveat for works by professors emeriti. The advantage of the Baker series is the option to focus on a particular historical period (generally 300-350 year intervals). Bassett, however, covers 601-1349 AD; a period known for a paucity of quality references (that's why they called half of it the dark ages, folks).

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