God's Battalions: The Case for the Crusades
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God's Battalions: The Case for the Crusades

3.8 37
by Rodney Stark
     
 

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ISBN-10: 0061582611

ISBN-13: 9780061582615

Pub. Date: 09/29/2009

Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers

In God’s Battalions, distinguished scholar Rodney Stark puts forth a controversial argument that the Crusades were a justified war waged against Muslim terror and aggression. Stark, the author of The Rise of Christianity, reviews the history of the seven major crusades from 1095-1291 in this fascinating work of religious revisionist history.

Overview

In God’s Battalions, distinguished scholar Rodney Stark puts forth a controversial argument that the Crusades were a justified war waged against Muslim terror and aggression. Stark, the author of The Rise of Christianity, reviews the history of the seven major crusades from 1095-1291 in this fascinating work of religious revisionist history.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780061582615
Publisher:
HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
09/29/2009
Pages:
276
Sales rank:
419,788
Product dimensions:
6.30(w) x 9.10(h) x 1.20(d)

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God's Battalions 3.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 36 reviews.
CaptWill More than 1 year ago
Finally a much needed "Pro-Western" approach to studying the Crusades. Stark writes clearly and crisply on the subject and leaves no doubt as to his professional opinion on the subject. Time and again he comes directly to the point. In some cases this comes across as axe-grinding or even bias, yet even so he makes a strong and valid case. I gave him a 4 on the research because at times it is difficult to determine from the footnote format just how well he researched the subject on both sides of the fence. Content wise Stark concentrates primarily on the 1st Crusade and the events that led up to it. He broadbrushes the rest of the Crusades making several debatable generalizations. Militarily he does not go into a great deal of detail on the battles. He includes a brief synopsis of the Military Orders. All this aside, it is a good read that brings up many points and issues sure to spark debate both about the past and the present situation in the Middle East. If you are at all interested in the Crusades and history you should read this book. At the very least it will help balance the scales. Enjoy!
Selvarin More than 1 year ago
Well what can I say? This book provides an intellectual 'reboot' for those who know no better than what the West has fed itself over the past century about the Crusades. He provides historical data that provides the overview, the historical context of what was going on in the Middle East and Western Europe, showing that the Crusades did not spring up for base greed and without provocation. It was a response to centuries of Muslim aggression, including the desecration of holy sites in Jerusalem that were very important to Christendom. There's even a solid explanation for why Constantinople was sacked, something which I'd forgotten about. And, it must be noted, the rosy veil that's surrounded Saladin's reputation for centuries is pulled back. (He wasn't that wonderful a character, although worse generals and rulers are a' plenty in that part of history.) This is not a rah-rah book for Westerners, however it is an attempt to show the circumstances of the times in the name of knowledge and balance. It's a good read that isn't so long that it bores a lay person. I'd recommend God's Battalions to others who are truly interested in learning something, as opposed to just accepting whatever's fed to them in the news. Read and decide for yourself.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The author looks at the crusades from a differing point of view than most current history books. Stark's facts and conclusions provide the reader with an intelligent argument to consider. Well written and definintely worth reading.
Dennis3150 More than 1 year ago
As evidenced by the 1 and 2 star reviewers here, its obvious there are some people in this country and others who refuse to read history. While this book is one sided, thats what its intended to be, ie to give the Western perspective, that being the REAL western perspective and not the apologist distortion of it. He gives specific evidence, dates, places, names, and sources to back up his statements (unlike ANY of the 1-2 star reviewers). I have rechecked most of them and havent found any faults or distortions in his statements. Its important that people read this book with an open but skeptical mind. This book gives one side of the story, I believe a fairly accurate one. You shouldnt read it alone though as there are several primary sources to vaildate the book and refute some of it. In general a great book to start out with on learning about the real crusades and start your own research on what really happened.
lawmarine32 More than 1 year ago
God's Battalions is an outstanding book that a provides an in-depth yet exciting look at a very critical period in our history! After reading this book you might find yourself looking to take a trip to the middle east. Well written and certainly a page turner!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is very well researched and sheds some light on a usually very one-sided part in history. Everyone knows what the crusades were and who fought, but the reason why they were fought is usually not mentioned. The crusades were not an early example of European colonialism, nor a means of forcing non-christians to convert under pain of death. Saladin was not the chivalrous character that he would be painted as centuries later during the "enlightenment", nor were the crusaders blood thirsty peasants in search of plunder or land. This is the perfect book for those who want to learn about what the crusades really were, not about what Voltaire tried to portray them as.
hondiat More than 1 year ago
Excellent research. Very well thought out data and conclusions. A welcome addition to the field of accurate research in history.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Challenging thecurrent myths about the crusades
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Its nice to see history thats not watered down by liberal ideology and opinion
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Read the truth about the players, their motivations, and their ultimate fates in this multinational, 2 century long, European Christian struggle to regain and hold the Holy Land from encroaching empires. Written from the perspective of that time period, free of the ideologically revisionist views of today.
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