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Born Bad
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About the Author

James Boyce is the multiple award-winning author of 1835 and Van Diemen's Land. He has a PhD from the University of Tasmania, where he is an honorary research associate of the School of Geography and Environmental Studies.

Reviews

"Boyce provides a solid, albeit complex, description of the presence of original sin concepts . . . the book has tremendous merit in its presentation of a nearly 2,000-year history of a major aspect of the Western intellectual tradition."--Choice "Born Bad is one of the best books on the history of the evolution of Christianity and its ideology. It is beautifully written and very well argued. This book is a necessary read for all those who are interested in Christianity, its evolution, and its history."--Washington Book Review "James Boyce has...written a brilliant and exhilarating work of popular scholarship." --The Washington Post "[Born Bad] makes a compelling argument...an engrossing study...Boyce leads us into new understandings of some of the central figures in Western culture....This is an exceptional, highly recommended work, innovative and creative in surprising ways."--Publisher's Weekly Starred Review "Boyce covers a lot of ground and explores a number of authors in this wide-ranging treatment, and the result is impressive. Readable and comprehensive, the book provides worthwhile food for thought. Boyce successfully illustrates the ability of original sin to dominate Western culture for nearly two millennia."--Kirkus "Born Bad is one of the best books on the history of the evolution of Christianity and its ideology. It is beautifully written and very well argued. This book is a necessary read for all those who are interested in Christianity, its evolution, and its history." --The Washington Book Review Praise for the Australian Edition "This highly original, readable book shows how the Christian idea that we are all somehow fundamentally warped has helped to shape democratic politics, free markets, sexual anxieties and even debates about whether dead babies go to heaven." -- Marion Maddox, author of God Under Howard and Taking God to School "An imaginative and utterly unpredictable book. Alleluia." - The Australian "Boyce finds fascinating marks of the idea of original sin in the big liberal ideas of free-market economics, Darwinian evolution and psychological analysis, but no compensating marks equivalent to the Christian idea of sanctifying grace." - The Monthly "James Boyce is the best kind of historian of ideas. He does not reduce the complexity of his subject to a few easy lessons. He opens up the history of the idea of original sin rather than narrowing it down...there is an unblinking regard for the efforts the human race has made to understand itself."- The Age Praise for Van Diemen's Land "The most significant colonial history since The Fatal Shore. In re-imagining Australia's past, it invents a new future." --Richard Flanagan "Like the best history, Van Diemen's Land is not an artfully constructed narrative with the (inevitably inadequate) evidence banished to endnotes, but a dialogue between historian and reader as they explore the fragile sources, and the silences, together." --Inga Clendinnen "The publication of Van Diemen's Land signals an entirely fresh approach to Australian history-writing . . . this is a brilliant publication." -- Alan Atkinson Praise for 1835 "Anyone who calls Melbourne home - in fact anyone who calls Australia home - should read this book." --Peter Mares "A first-class piece of historical writing. Boyce is a graceful and robust stylist and a fine storyteller." --Sunday Age

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