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Publisher's Summary

As we all know, and as many of our well-established textbooks have argued for decades, the Inquisition was one of the most frightening and bloody chapters in Western history, Pope Pius XII was anti-Semitic and rightfully called "Hitler's Pope", the Dark Ages were a stunting of the progress of knowledge to be redeemed only by the secular spirit of the Enlightenment, and the religious Crusades were an early example of the rapacious Western thirst for riches and power. But what if these long-held beliefs were all wrong?
In this stunning, powerful, and ultimately persuasive book, Rodney Stark, one of the most highly regarded sociologists of religion and the best-selling author of The Rise of Christianity, argues that some of our most firmly held ideas about history, ideas that paint the Catholic Church in the least positive light, are in fact fiction. Why have we held these wrongheaded ideas so strongly and for so long? And if our beliefs are wrong, what is the truth? In each chapter Stark takes on a well-established anti-Catholic myth, gives a fascinating history of how it became the conventional wisdom, and presents a startling picture of the real truth.
©2016 Rodney Stark (P)2016 Tantor
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Critic Reviews

"A majestically argued, gorgeously written, and essential book by one of the truly indispensable minds of our time. Bearing False Witness is one more gift to history from Rodney Stark. It should in turn be given to and read by students and professors everywhere, whatever their beliefs." (Mary Eberstadt, author of How the West Really Lost God)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

By jjdoctor on 12-10-16


Very well done. Learned things I wish I'd learned years ago. Nothing like understanding history to give meaning to today.

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7 of 7 people found this review helpful

By bgdade on 01-12-17

Historical Accuracy needed in modern world

As a former protestant and now a new convert to the Catholic faith, I found the information very valuable in explaining some of the prejudices I have encountered since becoming a Catholic

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11 of 12 people found this review helpful

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

By GoneToTexas on 11-12-17

Explains the vicious lies directed at Catholicism

Rodney Stark debunks anti-Catholic lies and propaganda.

The so-called "Enlightenment" was a bigoted and anti-intellectal cult which itself hindered progress and contributed nothing positive.

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By Elon Jepsen on 09-02-17

extremely eye opening

so much information that was completely new to me, but a very serious and convincing case was presented. A must read!!!

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