1 May 2013 sees the long-awaited release of Richard Holloway's acclaimed BBC Radio 4 series "Honest Doubt: The History of an Epic Struggle". It is a series of 20 personal essays charting 3000 years of religious and existential doubt through creative writers and thinkers.
It is now available both as mp3 audio download from AudioGo and as written transcripts from Amazon.
Feel free to forward, tweet and review!
MP3 Download - AudioGo
Written Transcripts - Amazon
Original series review quotes
"A rich gift and definitely one worth sharing" - Gillian Reynolds, Daily Telegraph
"One of the most superlative treatments I have come across in a long time" - Bruce Lynn
"Made me stop in my tracks" - Thinking Liberal Review
"Thought provoking, enlightening, educational, moving, humbling. Too good to miss " - Daily Strength
- The series is written and presented by Richard Holloway
- The series producer is Olivia Landsberg through Ladbroke Productions (Radio) Ltd.
- This is not in CD format but "commercial audio download" only (sadly!) The written transcripts to accompany the series are available as an eBook from Amazon.
- The series was originally broadcast in May/June 2012.
- Many listeners were upset that it was only on BBC iplayer for 7 days, hence this release.
- The series is an extension of some of the themes Richard explored in his touching memoirs "Leaving Alexandria", but is a completely separate offering.
In "Honest Doubt: The History of an Epic Struggle", the author and former Bishop of Edinburgh Richard Holloway considers some of the universal questions about our existence and the meaning of life, and how some of humanity's best thinkers and most creative writers have approached these 'literally life and death questions'. In exploring the relationship between faith and doubt over the last 3000 years, he looks at its impact from the birth of religious thinking, through the Old and New Testaments, the Middle Ages, the Reformation, the Enlightenment, the Victorian period, the horrors of World War II, right up to today. Joining him on his journey are: Karen Armstrong, Richard Dawkins, Sir Anthony Kenny, Sir Andrew Motion, AN Wilson and many others.
1 Prologue - sets out scope and context for the series
2 In the Beginning - looks at the birth of religious thinking and one of religion's earliest doubters
3 Casting Out Idols - looks at one of the recurring themes in Judeo-Christianity - idolatry.
4 Revelation and its Limits - looks at one of the recurring issues in the story of doubt - God's invisibility
5 Mysteries not Problems - reflects on the work of the mediaeval mystics.
6 Breaking Up - looks at the role of doubt during the Reformation in the 16th Century
7 The Agony and the Ecstasy - looks at the doubts of John Donne, John Bunyan and Gerard Manley Hopkins.
8 Vacating Heaven - explores the influence of the Scientific Revolution
9 Paying the Price - looks at how religion dealt with those who paraded their doubts, through censorship and excommunication
10 Caught in the Middle - explores the theme of Free Will.
11 Embracing Uncertainty - looks at John Keats and Percy Bysshe Shelley
12 Believer's Doubt - the doubts of 4 Victorian poets: Cardinal Newman, Arthur Hugh Clough, Matthew Arnold and Robert Browning
13 A Post Mortem - impact of Charles Darwin, Charles Lyell and the C19th fashion for historical criticism of the Bible
14 God's Funeral - brings together the 19th century English writer Thomas Hardy and the 19th century German philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche who represented for many the culmination of the Victorian crisis of faith.
15 Godless Morality - uses Dostoevsky and Nietzsche to explore the future of morality without God.
16 On the Edge - uses the American poet Emily Dickinson, Ludwig Wittgenstein, Richard Dawkins and philosopher Roger Scruton to explore the mystery of existence.
17 Saving Doubt - explores doubt and disloyalty with the help of three great 20th century writers – James Joyce, Evelyn Waugh and Graham Greene
18 Darkness Made Visible - uses C18th Scotsman David Hume and Holocaust literature of Paul Celan and Andre Schwarz-Bart to explore: how can we reconcile the idea of God when there's so much suffering in the world?
19 Presence and Absence - explores the idea with the help of three post-war poets; Philip Larkin, John Betjeman and RS Thomas.
20 Tears in the Rain - concludes that there are no conclusions but that kindly action is more powerful than thought
About Richard Holloway
Richard Holloway is a writer, broadcaster and author of more than twenty books, including Doubts and Loves (Canongate 2001), On Forgiveness (Canongate 2002), Godless Morality (Canongate 2009) and his memoirs Leaving Alexandria (Canongate 2012). He has written for many newspapers, including The Times, The Guardian, Sunday Herald and The Scotsman. He was Bishop of Edinburgh and Primus of the Scottish Episcopal Church until 2000, and Gresham Professor of Divinity until 2001. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh. He continues to present BBC Radio Scotland's Sunday Morning with Richard Holloway and in 2003, presented The Sword and The Cross, a history series on BBC 2.
Further information: Olivia Landsberg firstname.lastname@example.org 07950 269 273
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