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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Let down by a few careless slips, 21 July 2011
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This review is from: The Gay Gospels: Good News for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgendered People (Paperback)
This book is certainly a valuable collection of defensive and affirmative arguments around gay people and the bible. It has a bibliography which seems to cover a good selection of works dealing with these themes, but there is no index to the work. The structure of the book in chapters which are very topic-focused offsets the lack of an index to some extent, however a good index would have made the necessary links between issues, and their principal proponents, which inevitable get scattered across the various chapters.

But my main concern about this work is what I perceive as carelessness regarding its final production. While I acknowledge the author's intention not to produce an academic work, the author and publisher should at least have ensured that the version(s) of the bible from which they quote is clearly stated. This really does matter as any analysis of particular terms in the bible should be related to the bias which is known to exist in many translations - bias which can arise from the time of their compilation as well as from specific viewpoints held by the translators. As the work presently stands, we are shown texts, some in more archaic language than others (suggesting a rather 'mix and match' approach), with no clue as to the 'party line' which might underpin any particular extract.

A second example of poor proof-reading occurs on page 63 where it is stated: "In the first part of 2 Corinthians chapter 6 Paul is criticising Christians in Corinth for taking each other to court..." This should be 1 Corinthians chapter 6. This is an important error when you consider that 1 Corinthians ch 6 is one of the classic 'texts of terror' frequently used against gay people. To get this reference wrong is potentially highly misleading to a reader who is exploring the subject for the first time, especially when the book promotes itself as a resource to be used when arguing with opponents.

This could have been an excellent resource which brings together a collection of contemporary arguments and debates in one place; but it fails to land some of its punches because of careless production factors. It needs to be re-published in a revised edition which is fully accurate and properly referenced.

Philip Jones
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Location: Manchester, England

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