In Praise of Doubt
How to Have Convictions Without Becoming a Fanatic
Other Editions of This Title:
“A book of great practical wisdom by authors who have profound insight into the intellectual dynamics governing contemporary life.”
—Dallas Willard, author of Knowing Christ Today
In In Praise of Doubt, two world-renowned social scientists, Peter L. Berger (The Homeless Mind, Questions of Faith) and Anton C. Zijderveld (The Abstract Society, On Clichés), map out how we can survive the political, moral, and religious challenges raised by the extreme poles of relativism and fundamentalism. A book that asks and answers Big Questions, In Praise of Doubt offers invaluable guidance on how to have convictions without becoming a fanatic.
Praise For In Praise of Doubt: How to Have Convictions Without Becoming a Fanatic…
— John Wilson, editor, Books & Culture
“IN PRAISE OF DOUBT is a book of great practical wisdom by authors who have profound insight into the intellectual dynamics governing contemporary life..”
— Dallas Willard, author of Knowing Christ Today
“Brilliant yet clear, highly illuminating and often humorous, this is vintage Berger spiced with Zijderveld’s philosophical perspectives. In Praise of Doubt is essential reading for people of all faiths - and not least secularists.”
— Os Guinness, author of The Case for Civility
“The best parts of In Praise of Doubt explore the cultural battlegrounds where a consensus has broken down or not yet coalesced . . . Messrs. Berger and Zijderveld are optimistic: They believe that moral progress is on the march and that moderation is a virtue everyone can agree on.”
— Wall Street Journal
“In his new book In Praise of Doubt, sociologist Peter Berger discusses the dangers of absolute certainty and [quotes] Oliver Cromwell: ‘I beseech you, in the bowels of Christ, think it possible you may be mistaken.’ That seems an appropriate caveat in the matter of the sanctuary as well.”
— Trenton NJ Times
“This is . . . a serious attempt to explain how to find middle ground between conviction - religious and otherwise - and doubt. . . . In fact, Berger and Zijderveld argue that doubt -- especially as expressed in the idea of a loyal opposition -- is at the heart of a democratic system.”
— Los Angeles Times
“Peter Berger along with co-author Anton Zijderveld has written… the kind of book that, well, just from the cover I would have to buy it and read it. And then to see Peter Berger’s name on it, that just clinches the deal…. he is literally without peer.”
— Albert Mohler, AlbertMohler.com
“This book addresses, both broadly and individually, how to balance dedication to strong religious and moral beliefs, while simultaneously being objective and discerning. This book grapples, in a thoughtful, entertaining way with these and other meaty philosophical questions.”
— Reference & Research Book News
HarperOne, 9780061778162, 192pp.
Publication Date: August 4, 2009
About the Author
Peter L. Berger is an internationally renowned sociologist and faculty member at Boston University, where in 1985 he founded its Institute on Culture, Religion, and World Affairs. He is the author of The Social Construction of Reality, The Homeless Mind, and Questions of Faith.
Anton C. Zijderveld holds doctorates in both sociology and philosophy. He is on the faculty of Erasmus University in Rotterdam. Among his many books are The Abstract Society, On Clichés, and Reality in a Looking Glass.