Against the Grain

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Against the Grain

Christianity and Democracy, War and Peace

In this compelling collection of essays, New York Times bestselling author George Weigel advocates for a return to the core values and robust moral culture of the Catholic church. His ideas provide practical insight on the pressing global issues of our times.

The free society, in Weigel's estimation, is founded on Christian values and beliefs. In the controversy over the wholesome use of our freedoms we can lose track of our foundation and become truly lost. This incisive and accessible work brings us back to our roots to address the problems of today.

Drawing on the thinking of Augustine and Aquinas, Weigel raises a challenge to the liberal consensus that has become a dominating force in the Catholic church and calls for a renewing debate that can lead to workable solutions and hope for the future.

Reviews and endorsements

"Highly recommended for public and academic libraries. This 'against the grain' vision of politics, economics, and human dignity should shed much light on the thinking of today’s informed and religiously conservative Catholics."
Library Journal

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"Weigel’s learned, clearly written, and tightly argued essays stand as the best evidence for his claim that the Christian tradition is indispensable for any serious discussion of the challenges facing our country."
City Journal


"Against the Grain will be invaluable to all who ponder how to bring Christian social teachings to bear on the most urgent political, economic, and cultural issues in contemporary life. In these marvelously readable essays, Weigel challenges reigning opinion on a wide range of issues, offers fresh insights drawn from the Catholic intellectual heritage, and opens a  conversation 'with all  partisans of the free and virtuous society, of whatever creed or no creed.'”
Mary Ann Glendon, professor of law, Harvard University

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"Against the Grain is a wonderful collection of George Weigel's essays over the past thirteen years. This book shows once again that Weigel is the most articulate and astute Catholic lay theologian and public intellectual at work in the English speaking world today. For members of other but related traditions, Weigel brings Catholic political and social teaching into the type of discussion that is supposed to characterize a free, multi-faith society. Against the Grain is a true synthesis of theory and practice. Weigel saves his practical points from becoming pedestrian by backing them up with theory, and he saves his theorical insights from becoming arcane by showing their practical application in dealing with real life issues here and now."
David Novak, J. Richard and Dorothy Shiff professor of Jewish studies, University of Toronto

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"An essential voice in the perennial debate over what matters most, George Weigel is a serious man with provocative things to say about the way we live now and, perhaps more important, about the way we should live now but do not. Against the Grain is a bracing collection of pieces worth reading—and remembering."
Jon Meacham, editor of Newsweek

9780824524487
Paperback / 352 pages
Dimensions: 6 x 9
CROSSROAD, 2008