New Reference Book for Atheists: Voices of Unbelief

My friend Dale McGowan recently published a book about atheism we’re not used to seeing: A reference book with letters, essays, blog posts, book excerpts, monologues, and all sorts of other writings by atheists — from all over the world and encompassing modern history. It’s called Voices of Unbelief: Documents from Atheists and Agnostics.

Because it’s a reference book that libraries will hopefully stock, he was able to tailor the material to a younger audience (high school and college students). Yes, there’s discussion of “Atheism in Ancient Judea” but there’s also “The Birth of Pastafarianism.” The downside is that it’s not cheap, but textbooks and reference books never are.

Here’s part of the book description:

Unlike most other anthologies of atheist writings, the collection goes beyond public proclamations of well-known individuals to include the personal voices of unbelievers from many walks of life. While readers will certainly find excerpts from the published canon here, they will also discover personal documents that testify to the experience of living outside of the religious mainstream. The book presents each document in its historical context, enriched with an introduction, key questions, and activities that will help readers understand the past and navigate current controversies revolving around religious belief.

Some of you may already be comparing this to Christopher HitchensThe Portable Atheist. While that’s a great text for people interested in the philosophy of disbelief (Thomas Hobbes, David Hume, A.C. Grayling, etc.), I wasn’t all that engaged by it. That’s perfectly fine — Hitchens obviously had his audience — but I just want to note that the material in these books are far from overlapping.

Right now, Dale is giving away three signed copies of his book. All you have to do to enter in the drawing for the book is join or donate to Foundation Beyond Belief. More information is on his site, so check it out!

Then, tell your schools and libraries to order this book.

About Hemant Mehta

Hemant Mehta is the chair of Foundation Beyond Belief and a high school math teacher in the suburbs of Chicago. He began writing the Friendly Atheist blog in 2006. His latest book is called The Young Atheist's Survival Guide.

  • http://boldquestions.wordpress.com/ Ubi Dubium

    I know that he’s been hugely busy writing Atheism for Dummies!  When did he have the time to put this book together?  Does he ever sleep?

    • http://www.patheos.com/blogs/friendlyatheist/ Hemant Mehta

      He is a superhero.

      • JustWondering

        Not really, if you have people helping you assemble stuff other people wrote.

        And then charge 100 bucks for it!!  LOL!

    • http://twitter.com/TominousTone Thomas Lawson

      That Dummies book is gonna rock! Like this one, but more affordable.

  • http://www.youtube.com/user/GodVlogger?feature=mhee GodVlogger (on YouTube)

    Dale McGowan’s prior book “Parenting Beyond Belief” is a terrific asset for those raising children without religion/superstition.

    I think it is terrific that he is coming out with more books that serve as resources for our community.

  • JustWondering

    100 bucks for recycled material?  What a rip off, just like the textbook industry.

    The stuff might be useful, who knows, but not many students will be able to have a copy for personal use.

  • RBH

    Hemant, there are other booksellers besides Amazon. For example, Barnes & Noble also has it. I dislike the default to Amazon as though no one else sells books.