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Download A History of Atheism in Britain: From Hobbes to Russell by David Berman PDF

By David Berman

Probably no doctrine has excited as a lot horror and abuse as atheism. this primary historical past of British atheism, first released in 1987, tries to provide an explanation for this response whereas showing the improvement of atheism from Hobbes to Russell. even supposing avowed atheism seemed unusually overdue – 1782 in Britain – there have been covert atheists within the center 17th century. by way of tracing its improvement from so early a date, Dr Berman supplies an account of a big and engaging strand of highbrow history.

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But this statement has been rejected by a later writer who pointed out that the author was ignorant of the language of that country. Now, if there is no clash between denial and argument, then we have not the same grounds for positing repression. Hence we may have found in Herbert a descriptive denial, and argumentation which is aimed to justify that denial. As we have just seen, Herbert does try to argue against a claim that atheists have been discovered in a remote region. So this part of his argument does seem to be directed against the affirmers of atheism rather than against atheists themselves.

And in most other cases, speculative atheism is assailed as being really practical and/or unthinking atheism in disguise. 23 Judging from a note in one of Freud's case histories, the sort of clash we have been observing - as a sign of repression - may not be uncommon. 24 As far as I am aware, Freud never expressly elaborated on this the direct no and indirect yes - as a sign of repression. For him, resistance is the primary sign of repression. He makes a number of valuable comments on negation and denial, especially in his essay 'Negation' (1925); but he tends to think of denial or negation as a technique whereby unconscious repressed material can be made conscious.

This again would be a way of inhibiting atheism more subtle than our denials: they protest too much. Or to use Freud's model: in them the guard is finding it more and more difficult to prevent unwelcome guests from entering our house. We hear too much commotion. His tactics are becoming increasingly cruder: more like suppression than repression. Atheism can no longer be kept indirectly down. ) The guard is only half a preventer; for he is now also an ejector. , may be located somewhere between deep repression and suppression.

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