Defending the Faith

Global Histories of Apologetics and Politics in the Twentieth Century

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Todd Weir, Hugh McLeod
  • Oxford: 
    Oxford University Press
    , March
     336 pages.
     For other formats: Link to Publisher's Website.


This volume explores the many ways in which conflicts between secular worldviews and religions shaped the history of the twentieth century. It introduces the notion of 'apologetics' to highlight a common feature of these conflicts: both secular and religious groups employed a mixture of learned argument and popular propaganda to defend their faith, but also to come up with new forms of outreach and mission. By bringing the dynamics of religious and secular apologetics into a comparative perspective, and drawing on examples from Western Europe, the USSR, the USA, North Africa and Asia from the 1920s to the present, the volume offers important historical perspectives on current debates over the place of religion in contemporary politics.

About the Author(s)/Editor(s)/Translator(s): 

Todd H. Weir is professor of history of Christianity and modern culture in the Faculty of Theology and Religious Studies of the University of Groningen. Prior to arriving in the Netherlands, he taught at Queen's University Belfast for nine years.

Hugh McLeod was professor of church history at the University of Birmingham 1994–2010 and was president of CIHEC, the international organisation of historians of Christianity 2005–2010. 



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