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An Angel Directs the Storm: Apocalyptic Religion and American Empire

An Angel Directs the Storm: Apocalyptic Religion and American Empire
Michael S. Northcott

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This passionately argued book provides the first in-depth investigation of the religious politics of current American neo-conservatism. It shows that behind the neo-imperialism of the White House and George W. Bush lies an apocalyptic vision of the United States's sacred destiny 'at the end of history', a vision that is shared by millions of Americans. Michael Northcott traces the roots of American apocalyptic to Puritan Millennialism and contemporary fundamentalist readings of the Book of Revelation. He suggests that Americans urgently need to recover a critique of Empire of the kind espoused by the founder of Christianity - or else risk becoming idolaters of a new Roman Empire that leads others into servitude.

Author Info

Michael Northcott is one of Britain's best known specialists in theology and politics, and is Reader in Christian Ethics at the University of Edinburgh.


The Independent: "a measured but not less urgent account of what's wrong with America" "Northcott delivers an urgent warning that Americans need to take stock of their views on Christianity or risk becoming supporters of a new Roman Empire that leads others into servitude." Publishing News: "This challenging book provided the first in-depth investigation into the religious politics of current American neo-conservatism." "A very unusual slant on a much-debated issue, this is NOT just another book on the world post 9/11." Scientific and Medical Network Review Journal: "a must-read for those who want to understand both the theological and political background of the 'war on terror'"."

well-informed at all levels." Expository Times BOOK OF THE MONTH:'

He has read and marshalled a good part of the huge volume of American self critique of the past ten years or so and put it in to an incisive theological frame.''

What Northcott does, better than anyone I have yet encountered, is to help us to see the theological roots of what is going on, and then to develop a theological critique.''

[He] develops an incisive critique of American apocalyptic religion and argues for an understanding of church as counter-culture to empire. Rather, Christians must resist this new religion of violence and affirm belief in the true apocalypse, which is a message of hope to the victims of history, not to their imperial overlords. Perhaps one should not talk of pleasure in reading a book so serious and so disturbing but not the least of its merits is that Northcott writes beautifully and without the least trace of the barbaric jargon which mars so much current theological writing. The book should be read and attended to. Its importance, as Bush's second term gets underway, will only grow and if we want to understand ourselves and our world, and to respond to it as Christians, we could have no better guide.' THES, 13th May 2005. Review by Steven Bruce:'

This manifesto for "left-wing Christians against Bush" is a fascinating combination of genres... well-written and passionately argued.'

Bibliographic Info

Imprint: I.B.Tauris
Publisher: I.B.Tauris & Co. Ltd.

ISBN: 9781850434788
Publication Date: 23 Sep 2004
Number of Pages: 220
Height: 216
Width: 134

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