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Doubt: A History: The Great Doubters and Their Legacy of Innovation from Socrates and Jesus to Thomas Jefferson and Emily Dickinson

Doubt: A History: The Great Doubters and Their Legacy of Innovation from Socrates and Jesus to Thomas Jefferson and Emily Dickinson

This is an account of the world's greatest ‘intellectual virtuosos,' who are also humanity's greatest doubters and disbelievers, from the ancient Greek philosophers, Jesus, and the Eastern religions, to modern secular equivalents Marx, Freud and Darwin—and their attempts to reconcile the seeming meaninglessness of the universe with the human need for meaning,

Introduction: Doubt Is No Shadow: A Quiz and a Guide to the Question

Chapter 1: Whatever Happened to Zeus and Hera?, 600 BCE–1 CE: Greek Doubt

Chapter 2: Smacking the Temple, 600 BCE–1 CE: Doubt and the Ancient Jews

Chapter 3: What the Buddha Saw, 600 BCE–1 CE: Ancient Doubt in Asia

Chapter 4: When in Rome in Doubt, 50 BCE–200 CE: Empire of Reason

Chapter 5: Christian Doubt, Zen, Elisha, and Hypatia, 1–800 CE: Late-Classical Mix

Chapter 6: Medieval Doubt Loops-the-Loop, 800–1400: Muslims to Jews to Christians

Chapter 7: The Printing Press and the Age of Martyrs, 1400–1600: Renaissance and Inquisition

Chapter 8: Sunspots and White House Doubters, 1600–1800: Revolutions in the Authority of Reason

Chapter 9: Doubt’s Bid for a Better World, 1800–1900: Freethinking in the Age of Science and Reform

Chapter 10: Principles of Uncertainty, 1900–: The New Cosmopolitan

Conclusion: The Joy of Doubt: Ethics, Logic, Mood

Bibliography

Notes