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"Ara Barsam's reassessment of Schweitzer's ideas is of vital importance in today's world, which sorely lacks a unifying ethic that can help us find solutions to the violence, poverty, disease, and environmental degradation that threaten life on earth. No prior study in the English language has critically explored the origins, strengths, and limitations of Schweitzer's ethic in such depth. By weaving together analyses of four diverse sources-Schweitzer's philosophical writings, his theological writings, his sermons (many unpublished until recently), and his reflections on his daily medical work in Lambarene-Barsam demonstrates that Schweitzer's philosophy of Reverence for Life is a deeply-rooted and powerful moral vision with enormous relevance today. This timely work is a major contribution to a global re-awakening of interest in one of the most important figures of the 20th century, a true moral giant." ―Lachlan Farrow, President of The Albert Schweitzer Fellowship
"Barsam shows that Schweitzer's contribution to theological ethics has been far more seminal than most commentators have appreciated. One of the nice touches to Barsam's work is the way in which he fairly, but critically, introduces the human dimension of Schweitzer's own life, and reveals (against the critics) that it has an overall integrity. The Schweitzer that emerges is far more humanly compelling than in most portraits, and that despite the fact that the book is intended first and foremost as an intellectual history. Altogether a groundbreaking book and a remarkable intellectual achievement." ―Andrew Linzey, Director of Oxford Centre for Animal Ethics, and author of Animal Theology
"In this smart and readable book, Barsam provides a fresh and illuminating discussion of the ethic of reverence for life of le grand Docteur of Gabon, Albert Schweitzer. Schweitzer affirms that all life - human, animal, and plant - is sacred and must be treated with respect and reverence, and Barsam shows how the ethical thought of Schweitzer finds its place in the global context of philosophical, religious, and theological expressions of the international community. The resultant volume makes a significant contribution to contemporary ethical reflection at a time when our world is in desperate need of respect and reverence for life." ―Marvin Meyer, Director, Chapman University Albert Schweitzer Institute