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History of the Conflict Between Religion and Science [Kindle Edition]

John William Draper
3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)

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Book Description

This book was converted from its physical edition to the digital format by a community of volunteers. You may find it for free on the web. Purchase of the Kindle edition includes wireless delivery.

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Book Description

This early example of historical evidencing of the conflict thesis argues that the history of Christianity, especially Roman Catholicism, demonstrates repeated examples of the stifling of scientific development. It is now seen as one of the central texts of this school of thought.


On the basis of this view of the structure of the world great religious systems have been founded, and hence powerful material interests have been engaged in its support. These have resisted, sometimes by resorting to bloodshed, attempts that have been made to correct its incontestable errors--a resistance grounded on the suspicion that the localization of heaven and hell and the supreme value of man in the universe might be affected.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 434 KB
  • Print Length: 199 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1477598308
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B0082RUX0A
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Not Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #7,548 Free in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Free in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
28 of 32 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Engaging and thought-provoking 2 Mar. 2011
Format:Kindle Edition
This is the sort of book that justifies the purchase of a Kindle - without it I probably wouldn't have read it. I read it as:

a) an English Literature undergraduate, and
b) someone brought up in the Catholic faith

Absolutely fascinating, carefully reasoned and persuasive. A historical record of the growth of Christianity and the way it, and in particular Catholicism, became more powerful than secular governments. The basic premise of the book is (SPOILER) that religion holds that it is and always has been the ultimate infalliable truth, and therefore was obliged to oppose science when it proved that religious tenets such as a flat earth were false. Scientific progress was untenable in the face of an omniscient God, and this led to conflict. (END SPOILER)

The author tries - and mostly succeeds - to be even-handed but he is by turns amused, angered and horrified by the measures taken to preserve the status quo.

Not an anti-God book - more an anti-organised religion book.
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5.0 out of 5 stars faith or reason? 28 Nov. 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
When I downloaded this book I knew nothing about the author, john William Draper. He was an (English born) American scientist, philosopher, chemist and photographer who died in 1882. This book received worldwide recognition and was translated into several languages. It was banned by the Catholic Church.

Though the language used is verbose by present standards, it explores every aspect of the dichotomy between faith (mainly of the Catholic Church) and reason (of the scientist). I have never before read such an extended exploration of this conflict - which is how Draper sees it. One wonders how the Catholic Church could have survived such an onslaught. Draper is kinder to Islam (for example for protecting & fostering the learning of the Ancient Greeks) and to Protestantism.

Read this very stimulating book to get a later 19th century view of this conflict because the issues raised are still relevant today.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Thank you 18 Jun. 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I used to go to a local library to borrow some books, but have recently begun to download free books from Amazon using my Kindle when I have time. I am very glad that a lot of books are available free of charge. Thank you.
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1.0 out of 5 stars A book of myths 13 May 2014
Format:Kindle Edition
This book has been thoroughly discredited by professional historians, who regard it as nearly worthless and filled with the grossest of errors of fact and interpretation, and yet the myth this book has helped to create has become the "conventional wisdom" both for the general public and among scientists. Avoid at all costs! Try instead James Hannam's 'The Genesis of Science: How the Christian Middle Ages launched the Scientific Revolution' or Edward Grant's 'The Foundations of Modern Science in the Middle Ages: Their Religious, Institutional and Intellectual Contexts'.
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4.0 out of 5 stars religious people won't dare to read this book 11 Nov. 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
It's understandable that in centuries past there should have been a conflict between religion and science, but that it continues today is astonishing. If only the gullible believers would read a few books like this rather than just swallowing the 'cherry-picked' bits from a bible or similar so-called holy book, we could enter another period of enlightenment. But I fear that the endless process of each group of misguided zealots will continue 'smiting' each other - as required by their 'holy book'.
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2.0 out of 5 stars Religion v Science. 24 Dec. 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I didn't much like as a read or guide to the subject. There are plenty of books about which will lead the reader through the subject and I recommend that you do read around the subject for a full appreciation of the topic. Reading will add depth to your knowledge of the history and philosopy of both subjects.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Highly recommended 31 Oct. 2014
By johnk42
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
A superb book. When you are not howling with laughter at the amazing stupidity of the devout you are sobbing bitterly at their heartless cruelty. The writer of this book is religious but tells it like it is. The truth and nothing but the truth.
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1.0 out of 5 stars false statements 23 Sept. 2014
By Jack L
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This book has lot of edited falsifications, doesn't worth even to skim, ...I don't suggest to read as it doesn't worth a star. So, don't waste your time, deleted it right away!
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