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The result is a book full of broad claims resting precariously on slender evidence. Thomas' overly vague descriptions of archival material cannot support his conclusions.
If you're interested in learning more about Eddy (as opposed to learning more about what Thomas *thinks* about Eddy based on secret information), don't waste your money on this book.
The authors appear to be non-Christian Scientists have looked into Christian Science and decided that it is the correct explanation of Jesus's works and teachings. Although this book offers some wonderful intellectual insights into Mrs. Eddy's life and career, it is far more praiseworthy than antagonistic.
Strongly recommended, whether or not you're a Christian Scientist.
Doc, if you read this, I want to say now that you are unequivocally the most brilliant, effective and entertaining teacher I have ever had the privelige of learning from. You have taught me more than any person ever has, and given to me the art of analysis. Thank you, thank you, thank you. My only regret is that you didn't stay one more year. I know dozens of us would have been lining up for Am Cult, myself included.
-David (no, not Big Hands who forgot his notes for the final)
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Although Ms. Cather publicly disclaimed credit for the resulting series of articles which form the basis of this book, the editors provide convincing proof that she wrote it.
In addition to being a highly entertaining account of the rise of one of the more fascinating characters in American religious history and the church she founded, the book provides extensive factual detail to anyone seriously interested in the history of either. While it is critical of Mrs. Eddy, it is also complimentary. Factually accurate and extensively documented., it is perhaps the most objective account available of a truly remarkable woman and her church.
Although the book was the subject of favorable reviews when it was published in 1910, the response of the church was, predictably, less enthusiastic. According to the afterword, even before it was published, "three spokesmen for the Christian Science church visited the McClure's office and tried to suppress the series of articles. Christian Scientists were said to have later bought and destroyed most copies of the book, and library copies were said to be kept out of general circulation through constant borrowings by church members... The copyright for the Milmine book was purchased by a friend of Christian Science, the plates from which the book was printed were destroyed, and the manuscript also acquired. That this happened is supported by the fact that the manuscripts for the 'Milmine' book are held in the Archives and Library of the First Church of Christ, Scientist, in Boston." (pp. 497-498)
Perhaps the most important contribution that this book makes is to present Mrs. Eddy and her church in the context of their time. There is a tendency today to present her as an early oppressed feminist. That interpretation should be compared with Ms. Cather's hard-nosed assessment:: "The result of Mrs. Eddy's planning and training and pruning is that she has built up the largest and most powerful organization ever founded by any woman in America. Probably no other woman so handicapped-so limited in intellect, so uncertain in conduct, so tortured by hatred and hampered by petty animosities-has ever risen from a state of helplessness and dependence to a position of such power and authority... The growth of her power has been extensive as well as intensive." (p. 480)
In fact, the only complaint in an otherwise favorable review by a student of nervous disorders in the American Historical Review (Vol 15, July 1910), was that the author did "not do enough to explain the abnormal psychology of the founder of Christian Science-the record of hysteria, hypochondria, and the delusion of persecution." (p.498)
Well worth reading
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It's outdated because it uses the OMT, I would really thanks Rambaugh if he could write a new edition!
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Most well-researched biographies are dry and factual. Ms. Gill has managed to organize an unusual life into chapters that are more than chronological slices. Step by step, she takes the reader through the development of Ms. Eddy's thought and philosophy. At the same time, we learn a huge amount of Ms. Eddy as a literary, spiritual, and political leader.
If you buy this book, please don't neglect to read the footnotes. Ms. Gill has packed them with tons of interesting trivia that otherwise would have cluttered up her well-turned prose. This is a rare and valuable work--one that should become the standard starting place for any serious student of either the Christian Science movement or of women's role in the late 19th century. I hope that Ms. Gill will receive the time and resources to complete other projects, such as this one.
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There is something that doesn't ring true with Eddy's Flint. Is it because he's tried to make her both SuperWoman and vulnerable, sane and slightly not, reckless and conservative? Whatever it is, Flint is flawed. There is very little character development in the book - the book is not about character development - but the plot is outstanding - the book's strong point. I agree that the book is hard to put down, you may want to read it one sitting. But don't. This book needs to be read slowly lest you miss one of the subtleties the author throws randomly throws in.
retrospect. Flint's a British operative, gone awol after she is caught in the crossfire of an international plot.
Harry Cohen, trying to find her, gives us the retrospective. Unlike Flint, Harry's almost too real, too wounded, to be given the task. His character, the best developed in the book, sees every issue from both sides; he's devoted to finding Flint, helping her, and righting the wrong that's been done her.
Meanwhile, Flint uses her powers of deception and persuasion to seek her revenge on an international criminal. The reader is absorbed in her risk-taking, all the while learning what makes her tick. Think Marg Helgenberger for the film or the TV movie.
Not a big fan of spy thrillers, I found Flint engaging, well-written, with a few forgiveable flaws. Looking forward to more from Paul Eddy, he has a new and crisp voice.
One might think, "Oh No, another cop story." However, in this case I and my friends haven't seen or heard (audio books) such realistic excitement since Joseph Wambaugh hit the scene. That's because we're cops and we don't get excited unless it's good, it's real, it can happen, it has happened, been there, done that, seen it and it tells it like it is.
While reading this book you become Grace Flint's partner, the one that can only listen and watch. The one wondering how she'll react, how the rest of the team will react. The action, the plot, all of it invokes feelings that can cause you to leave sweaty prints on the pages.
The book moves fast when it should. It has been said to be slow in certain areas, but in those areas you obtain the information you will need to prepare for the action, just like you would on the job.
Paul Eddy has done a splendid job on the book and Grace Flint. I wonder, have the names and places been changed like Jack Webb would say, is it really fiction?
Treat yourself to what will be one of the best books that your likely to ever read. Prepare yourself to read a book that is hard to put down and will leave you wanting more Flint when you've finshed.
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Von Fettweis and Warneck had access to over 21,000 of Eddy's unpublished letters and writings; what a shame they chose to perpetuate myths rather than using the documents to present a realistic and fair view of their spiritual leader.
An appreciation of Mary Baker Eddy's contribution to us, enable the reader to obtain deeper understanding of the spiritual meaning of her well-known masterwork: Science and Health.
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Since I got the book, other developers are coming to my desk and asking to use it. If you need to know every little detail about every HTML tag, this is the reference book for you.
Note that this is NOT a book for beginners to use to learn how to write HTML. That is evident if you look inside, but some may be fooled by the title.