What We Are Reading Today: The Preacher’s Wife by Kate Bowler

Updated 09 October 2019

What We Are Reading Today: The Preacher’s Wife by Kate Bowler

  • Many women have carved out unofficial positions of power in their husbands’ spiritual empires

Since the 1970s, an important new figure has appeared on the center stage of American evangelicalism — the celebrity preacher’s wife. 

Although most evangelical traditions bar women from ordained ministry, many women have carved out unofficial positions of power in their husbands’ spiritual empires or their own ministries. 

The biggest stars — such as Beth Moore, Joyce Meyer, and Victoria Osteen — write bestselling books, grab high ratings on Christian television, and even preach.

In this engaging book, Kate Bowler, an acclaimed historian of religion and the author of the bestselling memoir Everything Happens for a Reason: And Other Lies I’ve Loved, offers a sympathetic and revealing portrait of megachurch women celebrities, showing how they must balance the demands of celebrity culture and conservative, male-dominated faiths, according to a review on the Princeton University Press website.

Despite their influence and wealth, these women are denied the most important symbol of spiritual power — the pulpit.


What We Are Reading Today: Why Trust Science? by Naomi Oreskes

Updated 23 October 2019

What We Are Reading Today: Why Trust Science? by Naomi Oreskes

Do doctors really know what they are talking about when they tell us vaccines are safe? 

Should we take climate experts at their word when they warn us about the perils of global warming? Why should we trust science when our own politicians don’t? 

In this landmark book, Naomi Oreskes offers a bold and compelling defense of science, revealing why the social character of scientific knowledge is its greatest strength — and the greatest reason we can trust it, says a review on the Princeton University Press website.

Tracing the history and philosophy of science from the late 19th century to today, Oreskes explains that, contrary to popular belief, there is no single scientific method. 

Rather, the trustworthiness of scientific claims derives from the social process by which they are rigorously vetted. This process is not perfect, but she draws vital lessons from cases where scientists got it wrong. Oreskes shows how consensus is a crucial indicator of when a scientific matter has been settled, and when the knowledge produced is likely to be trustworthy.

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