Jerusalem, Jerusalem: How the Ancient City Ignited Our Modern World

Jerusalem, Jerusalem: How the Ancient City Ignited Our Modern World

by James Carroll
3.4 17


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Jerusalem, Jerusalem: How the Ancient City Ignited Our Modern World by James Carroll

James Carroll’s urgent, masterly Jerusalem, Jerusalem uncovers the ways in which the ancient city became, unlike any other in the world—reaching deep into our contemporary lives—an incendiary fantasy of a city. 

In Carroll’s provocative reading of the deep past, the Bible’s brutality responded to the violence that threatened Jerusalem from the start. Centuries later, the mounting European fixation on a heavenly Jerusalem sparked both anti-Semitism and racist colonial contempt. The holy wars of the Knights Templar burned apocalyptic mayhem into the Western mind. Carroll’s brilliant and original leap is to show how, as Christopher Columbus carried his own Jerusalemcentric worldview to the West, America too was powerfully shaped by the dream of the City on a Hill—from Governor Winthrop to Abraham Lincoln to Woodrow Wilson to Ronald Reagan. The nuclear brinksmanship of the 1973 Yom Kippur War helps prove his point: religion and violence fuel each other, with Jerusalem the ground zero of the heat. 

To the standard set by Constantine’s Sword, Jerusalem, Jerusalem is again a “rare book that combines searing passion . . . with a subject that has affected all our lives” (Chicago Tribune).

JAMES CARROLL's critically admired books include Practicing Catholic, the National Book Award–winning An American Requiem, House of War, which won the first PEN/Galbraith Award, and the New York Times bestseller Constantine’s Sword, now an acclaimed documentary.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780547195612
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Publication date: 03/09/2011
Pages: 432
Product dimensions: 6.20(w) x 9.10(h) x 1.60(d)
Age Range: 14 Years

About the Author

James Carroll was raised in Washington, D.C., and ordained to the Catholic priesthood in 1969. He served as a chaplain at Boston University from 1969 to 1974, then left the priesthood to become a writer. A distinguished scholar-
in-residence at Suffolk University, he is a columnist for the Boston Globe and a regular contributor to the Daily Beast.

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Jerusalem, Jerusalem: How the Ancient City Ignited Our Modern World 3.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 17 reviews.
ZenMasterJ More than 1 year ago
This very well written and researched book works on several levels at once. As a history, this is a story of one city's growth and of its many inhabitants, from ancient times to the present. The history of Europe, and the development of American culture and values, is traced directly to the history of Jerusalem. Sociologically, the book explains how each group of city inhabitants, and successive sets of conquerors, put their stamp on not only the city, but the greater world. The book also tracks the growth of Jewish, Catholic and Muslim religions as they emanate out from their core founding in Jerusalem, and then interacted with each other so as to reflect back, rarely in a positive manner, on the founding city. Most profoundly, Jerusalem Jerusalem shows how today's Middle East came to be shaped through well-meaning but short-sighted policies. Over two millenia, multiple complex issues were created, which our current and future generations must address and resolve. Carroll tells is that there is no easy fix, nor even a willingness to resolve centuries of misunderstanding, mistrust and mistakes. The book, if read with an open mind rather than with narrow vision, is compelling. It provides plausible answers to many questions that not enough of us care to ask about the role and history of religion in world affairs, politics and interpersonal relations. Jerusalem Jerusalem is one of the best books I've read in recent years.
jnt21 More than 1 year ago
This book is a little textbooky in breadth and depth of subject. However it is well worth reading. It is so full of well documented information and gives the reader a great background to understand our western culture. James Carroll clarifies the religious and the political movements that shape the reality that we are living with.
Guest More than 1 year ago
If you are a thoughtful person who cares about world history, this is a fine choice.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
richardcolonel More than 1 year ago
James Carroll had done a superb job in bringing the events of this book up to date. As well it should. He wrote this book in a way that not only make the reading interesting but also as gripping as a Tom Clancy novel.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I bought this hoping to read about the history of Jerusalem and the 3 religions that claim it as the spirtual center of the faiths. One would think from the title and subhead that the author would indeed deliver on this promise. Not so. Instead we get this sprawling mess of a recitation of the author's point of view on Judaism, Catholicism and Islam. It might not be so bad if he wasn't just rambling on about trying to prove his personal pov on what the bible is REALLY trying to tell us. Although the author claims to be a Catholic (as a former priest) he sure doesn't seem to belive any of its dogmas. Mostly he seems to want to talk about how violent all the religions are and continue to be. Plowing through his meandering text just got more and more difficult to do. Before you buy read the NYT book review for a much better summary of the crap put forth by this book. Thanks B&N for such a LOUSY sample. Could have saved myself the expense of buying this drivel.
Guest More than 1 year ago
A most interesting concept to explain the hatred, bigotry and violence in today's world
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