A Secular Age

A Secular Age


What does it mean to say that we live in a secular age? Almost everyone would agree that we--in the West, at least--largely do. And clearly the place of religion in our societies has changed profoundly in the last few centuries. In what will be a defining book for our time, Charles Taylor takes up the question of what these changes mean--of what, precisely, happens when a society in which it is virtually impossible not to believe in God becomes one in which faith, even for the staunchest believer, is only one human possibility among others.

Taylor, long one of our most insightful thinkers on such questions, offers a historical perspective. He examines the development in "Western Christendom" of those aspects of modernity which we call secular. What he describes is in fact not a single, continuous transformation, but a series of new departures, in which earlier forms of religious life have been dissolved or destabilized and new ones have been created. As we see here, today's secular world is characterized not by an absence of religion--although in some societies religious belief and practice have markedly declined--but rather by the continuing multiplication of new options, religious, spiritual, and anti-religious, which individuals and groups seize on in order to make sense of their lives and give shape to their spiritual aspirations.

What this means for the world--including the new forms of collective religious life it encourages, with their tendency to a mass mobilization that breeds violence--is what Charles Taylor grapples with, in a book as timely as it is timeless.

Similar Books

ISBN 10: 0802867618
ISBN 13: 9780802867612

01 May 2014
James K. A. Smith

ISBN 10: 0674824261
ISBN 13: 9780674824263

20 Jul 1992
Charles Taylor

ISBN 10: 0692919996
ISBN 13: 9780692919996

08 Sep 2017
Derek Rishmawy

ISBN 10: 0268035040
ISBN 13: 9780268035044

06 Mar 2007
Alasdair MacIntyre

ISBN 10: 0674987691
ISBN 13: 9780674987692

31 Aug 2018
Charles Taylor

ISBN 10: 083084483X
ISBN 13: 9780830844838

17 Jul 2018
Alan Noble

ISBN 10: 0822332930
ISBN 13: 9780822332930

01 Feb 2004
Charles Taylor

ISBN 10: 067466020X
ISBN 13: 9780674660205

11 Jan 2017
Charles Taylor

ISBN 10: 0300079877
ISBN 13: 9780300079876

01 Dec 1999
Jaroslav Pelikan

ISBN 10: 0691020418
ISBN 13: 9780691020419

21 Jan 1988
Sören Kierkegaard

ISBN 10: 0691020426
ISBN 13: 9780691020426

21 Jan 1988
Sören Kierkegaard

ISBN 10: 1780936257
ISBN 13: 9781780936253

27 Jun 2013
Alasdair MacIntyre