Beyond the Book: Background information when reading The Great Transformation

Summary |  Excerpt |  Reading Guide |  Reviews |  Beyond the Book |  Readalikes |  Genres & Themes |  Author Bio

The Great Transformation

The Beginning of Our Religious Traditions

by Karen Armstrong

The Great Transformation by Karen Armstrong X
The Great Transformation by Karen Armstrong
  • Critics' Opinion:

    Readers' Opinion:

  • First Published:
    Mar 2006, 496 pages

    Paperback:
    Apr 2007, 560 pages

    Genres

  • Rate this book


Book Reviewed by:
BookBrowse Review Team
Buy This Book

About this Book

Beyond the Book

This article relates to The Great Transformation

Print Review

Karen Armstrong spent seven years as a nun in the Catholic Society of the Holy Child Jesus during the 1960s and later wrote a tell-all book, Through the Narrow Gate (1982) that bemoaned the restrictive life.

She teaches Christianity at London's Leo Baeck College for the Study of Judaism. It was her first trip to Jerusalem in 1983 that piqued her interest in commonality among faiths. At the time she was an atheist who was "wearied" by religion and "worn out by years of struggle;" but the trip gave her back "a sense of what faith is all about." 

Her books include A History of God (1993), Jerusalem: One City, Three Faiths (1996) and The Battle for God (2000).  Continue bio at BookBrowse.....


Also of interest:
A 30 minute NPR radio interview (New York Public Radio, 30 mins).

Select quotes from this interview:

"Too many religious people want to be right not compassionate."
"The practice of compassion is religion."
"Religion is designed not to answer our questions but to help us to ask them and to hold us in an attitude of awe and wonder ... a lot of science does that too."

Did you know? The term Axial Age was coined in 1948 by German philosopher Karl Jaspers to describe the approximate 600 year period from around 800 BC during which the foundations of the world's great religions was laid.

Filed under

This "beyond the book article" relates to The Great Transformation. It originally ran in May 2006 and has been updated for the April 2007 paperback edition. Go to magazine.

This review is available to non-members for a limited time. For full access become a member today.
Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" articles
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $45 for 12 months or $15 for 3 months.
  • More about membership!

Join BookBrowse

and discover exceptional books
for just $3.75 per month.

Find out more


Top Picks

  • Book Jacket: The Book of Goose
    The Book of Goose
    by Yiyun Li
    Yiyun Li's The Book of Goose is a story of childhood friendship between narrator Agnès, a one-...
  • Book Jacket: Big Red
    Big Red
    by Jerome Charyn
    Jerome Charyn made his name as an author of detective novels, and over the years he has taken his ...
  • Book Jacket: If I Survive You
    If I Survive You
    by Jonathan Escoffery
    In If I Survive You, author Jonathan Escoffery portrays a family falling apart with grace. Main ...
  • Book Jacket: Stories from the Tenants Downstairs
    Stories from the Tenants Downstairs
    by Sidik Fofana
    'Everybody got a story, everybody got a tale / Question is: Is it despair or prevail?' ...

Book Club Discussion

Book Jacket
The Bell in the Lake
by Lars Mytting
The engrossing epic novel - a #1 bestseller in Norway - of a young woman whose fate plays out against her village's mystical church bells.

Members Recommend

  • Book Jacket

    Our Missing Hearts
    by Celeste Ng

    From the author of Little Fires Everywhere, the inspiring new novel about a mother’s unbreakable love in a world consumed by fear.

Book Club Giveaway!
Win A Minor Chorus

A Minor Chorus

A debut novel from a rising literary star that brings the modern queer and Indigenous experience into sharp relief.

Enter

Wordplay

Solve this clue:

G R T Bad R

and be entered to win..

Your guide toexceptional          books

BookBrowse seeks out and recommends the best in contemporary fiction and nonfiction—books that not only engage and entertain but also deepen our understanding of ourselves and the world around us.