On Wednesday, November 25 our 5015 Connectiut Avenue store will close early for the day at 5 p.m.
Busboys and Poets Locations close at 10 p.m. All locations will be closed Thursday for Thanksgiving.

Sacred Causes: The Clash of Religion and Politics, from the Great War to the War on Terror (Paperback)

Special Order—Subject to Availability


Beginning with the chaotic post-World War I landscape, in which religious belief was one way of reordering a world knocked off its axis, Sacred Causes is a penetrating critique of how religion has often been camouflaged by politics. All the bloody regimes and movements of the twentieth century are masterfully captured here, from Stalin's Soviet Union, Hitler's Germany, Mussolini's Italy, and Franco's Spain through to the modern scourge of terrorism. Eloquently and persuasively combining an authoritative survey of history with a timely reminder of the dangers of radical secularism, Burleigh asks why no one foresaw the religious implications of massive Third World immigration, and he deftly investigates what are now driving calls for a civic religion to counter the terrorist threats that have so shocked the West.

About the Author

Michael Burleigh is the author of Earthly Powers, Sacred Causes, and The Third Reich: A New History, which won the Samuel Johnson Prize for Nonfiction. He is married and lives in London.

Praise For…

“Michael Burleigh’s Sacred Causes is one of the most important books of the decade.”
-Amanda Foreman, The Observer

“A clever, honest and often funny analysis of the confrontation throughout the 20th century between religion and politics.”
-The Economist

“Dazzling. . . . A rewarding example of intellectual history.”
-Publishers Weekly

“A fascinating chronicle.”
-The Wall Street Journal

“It is a tribute to Mr. Burleigh’s intellectual passion that . . . he manages to challenge and enlighten.”
-Adam Kirsch, The New York Sun

“Michael Burleigh writes well about the woolly, messianic religiosity of Nazism in particular.”
-Tony Judt, The New York Times Book Review

“Burleigh has a talent, reminiscent of Paul Johnson, for digging up long-forgotten historical episodes.”
-The American Conservative

“Impressive. . . . Burleigh’s book deserves the widest possible readership.”
-Max Hastings, The Sunday Times

“Compelling. . . . For all his acerbity, this author remains a humane presence throughout his book.”
-Noel Malcolm, The Sunday Telegraph

“A magnificent history of the 20th century. . . . A terrifically entertaining book.”
-Dominic Sandbrook, The Daily Telegraph

“History is rarely rendered in such thrilling breadth, with such wit or with such terrible topicality.”
-Rod Liddle, The Spectator

“Burleigh’s book is epic in its range…refreshingly unjudgemental. . . . This brilliant book proves that history has no end.”
-Simon Heffer, The Literary Review

“Beautifully written, fearlessly outspoken, full of superb portraits of heroes and monsters, Sacred Causes is an exuberant tour-de-force.”
-Simon Sebag Montefiore, The Evening Standard

“Burleigh’s study of secular hubris may well be judged to be the most significant work of history published this decade.”
-Alex Butterworth, The Observer

“Sacred Causes is most useful where it uncovers the hidden roots of 20th-century totalitarianism.”
-John Gray, The Guardian

“Wonderful. . . . Sacred Causes is a challenging history book with the power to scandalise its readers.”
-The Financial Times

“Brilliant. . . . A powerful indictment of our uneasy times.”
-JG Ballard, The Observer

Product Details
ISBN: 9780060580964
ISBN-10: 0060580968
Publisher: Harper Perennial
Publication Date: March 11th, 2008
Pages: 557
Language: English