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The Life and Thought of Herbert Butterfield
History, Science and God

$58.99 (C)

  • Date Published: October 2012
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9781107411425

$ 58.99 (C)
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  • Once recalled only for The Whig Interpretation of History (1931) and Christianity and History (1949), Sir Herbert Butterfield's contribution to western culture has undergone an astonishing revaluation over the past twenty years. What has been left out of this reappraisal is the man himself. Yet the force of Butterfield's writings is weakened without some knowledge of the man behind them: his temperament, contexts and personal torments. Previous authors have been unable to supply a rounded portrait for lack of available material, particularly a dearth of sources for the crucial period before the outbreak of war in 1939. Michael Bentley's original, startling biography draws on sources never seen before. They enable him to present a new Butterfield, one deeply troubled by self-doubt, driven by an urgent sexuality and plagued by an unending tension between history, science and God in a mind as hard and cynical as it was loving and charitable.

    • The first biography of the celebrated historian Sir Herbert Butterfield, written with exclusive access to private sources
    • A new, systematic evaluation of Butterfield's responses to the Third Reich and Marxism
    • Crucial reading for historians, theologians and scholars of international relations
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    Reviews & endorsements

    "exceptionally illuminating new biography." -James Lothian, Journal of British Studies

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    Product details

    • Date Published: October 2012
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9781107411425
    • length: 398 pages
    • dimensions: 229 x 152 x 21 mm
    • weight: 0.53kg
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    Part I. Private Intellectual, 1900–45:
    1. Bronte country
    2. Peterhouse and Princeton
    3. Love, marriage and 'the sex question'
    4. Thinking man's historian
    5. European civilisation and the Third Reich
    6. Wartime ambiguities
    Part II. Contours of an Original Mind:
    7. Science
    8. God
    9. History
    Part III. Public Intellectual, 1945–79:
    10. Height of his powers
    11. From history to historiography
    12. From diplomatic history to international relations
    13. From autumn to winter.

  • Author

    Michael Bentley, University of St Andrews, Scotland

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