Sunday, August 22, 2010

Book Review: Christians are Hate-Filled Hypocrites

I had the chance to review Christians Are Hate-Filled Hypocrites ...and Other Lies You've Been Told by Bradley R.E. Wright, and it was the description that made me jump on it.  This paragraph, in particular:
"Get the truth behind the statistics you've been hearing and how the numbers are being manipulated, and discover what is really happening in American Christianity."
If you've read my blog for any length of time, you already know I'm a geek.  So telling you that Statistics was one of my favorite college courses probably doesn't shock you.  I also really enjoyed my Social Psych courses, especially when we got into the idea of massaging statistics to convey the ideas we wanted to convey.  Okay, they weren't encouraging us to be manipulative, rather they were trying to make us understand that we needed to look deeper at the conclusions being drawn by any study.  Do the data really support it?

So this book was fascinating to me.

Wright goes through a lot of the statistics out there about Christianity in general, and examines if the conclusions being drawn are really legitimate.  He is funny, and he usually succeeds in writing in English (instead of in jargon) which I really appreciated.  I hadn't mentioned how long it has been since I took that Statistics course... and there are a lot of technical details I just don't remember.

The media, and people within the church, often paint a very bleak picture.  Wright goes through one fascinating chapter after another, showing where "everyone" got it right, and where the interpretations are misleading.  I don't think I'm spoiling anything by telling you that "misleading" beats "right" more often than not.

I loved this book.  I'm planning a statistics course for Connor (possibly even this year), and this book is going to be a supplementary text.

Disclosure:  Bethany House provided me with a complimentary copy of this book for review purposes.  No other compensation was received, and all opinions are my own.


Ruth said...

This sounds like my kind of book. I'm going to put this on my to-read list!

Deanna said...

I read this book too and enjoyed it more than I thought it would. I gave my copy to my youth pastor because he enjoys statistics like I do. I never considered using it for a statistics class. What a great idea!!