Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Bright Lights from the Enlightenment

a review by Edd Doerr

The Original Atheists: First Thoughts on Nonbelief, edited by S.T. Joshi. Prometheus Books,  2013, 282 pp, $20.95.

From the book's cover blurb  ----

"Brilliantly samples the work of the leading thinkers of the European and American Enlightenments that culminated in our era's secular naturalism. Especially relevant are the sections by Locke, Jefferson and Madison that counter the regressive efforts by today's religious Right to lead us back to the Dark Ages.

"Edd Doerr, President of Americans for Religious Liberty and columnist for Free Inquiry"

That said, S.T.  Joshi, editor of the  Library of America classic Ambrose Bierce: The Devil's Dictionary, Tales & Memoirs (880 pp, 2011), The Unbelievers  and other books, here gives us a convenient selection of the writings of such notable 18th century Enlightenment authors as Meslier, Voltaire, d'Holbach, Kant, Hume, Bentham, Locke, Jefferson, Madison, Paine and Ethan Allen, together with brief introductions. A great addition to any library.

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