Christianophobia

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On October 29, 2005, three Indonesian schoolgirls were beheaded as they walked to school -- targeted because they were Christian. Like them, many Christians around the world suffer violence or discrimination for their faith. In fact, more Christians than people of any other faith group now live under threat. Why is this religious persecution so widely ignored?

In Christianophobia Rupert Shortt investigates the shocking treatment of Christians on several continents and exposes the extent of official collusion. Christian believers generally don't become radicalized but tend to resist nonviolently and keep a low profile, which has enabled politicians and the media to play down a problem of huge dimensions. The book is replete with relevant historical background to place events within their appropriate political and social context.

Shortt demonstrates how freedom of belief is the canary in the mine for freedom in general. Published at a time when the fundamental importance of faith on the world stage is being recognized more than ever, this book will be essential reading for anyone interested in people's right to religious freedom, no matter where, or among whom, they live.

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Rupert Shortt is religion editor of The Times LiterarySupplement and a visiting fellow of Blackfriars Hall,University of Oxford. His other books include Rowan'sRule: The Biography of the Archbishop of Canterburyand God's Advocates: Christian Thinkers inConversation. He lives in London.,

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Catholic Books Review
"Presents a much needed account of Christian persecution in the modern world. . . . Genuine engagement with the world politically, economically, socially, and religiously means real engagement with reality. Shortt's presentation and analysis accomplish this engagement admirably."

John Cornwell
"A major epic with huge international interest. . . . Rupert Shortt is a world-class journalist. . . . He tells this story with passion, accuracy, balance, and great readability. . . . I cannot recommend it, and him, more highly."

A. N. Wilson
"A very well balanced and timely analysis of a phenomenon which some people in the West might not even recognize as a reality: namely, the systematic attack being mounted on Christianity throughout the world from a wide variety of assailants. Shortt is a sane, observant reporter, and the story he tells is a very troubling one."

William Doino Jr. in First Things
"Rupert Shortt . . . tells a story as harrowing as it is unforgettable. . . . Christianophobia covers it all. I read the book in one sitting, gripped by every page."

Philip Jenkins in The Anxious Bench
"Impressive. . . . An excellent study of anti-Christian persecution around the world. . . . Splendidly rich and informative."

Catherine Pepinster in The Independent
"Shortt points out some very uncomfortable truths in this powerful analysis of the persecution of Christians. . . . [He] has done a remarkable job in compiling this book when so little attention has been given in the mainstream media to the plight
of Christians."

Ian Linden in The Tablet
"Shortt collates useful country-specific evidence of rampant intolerance of Christians from interview material, testimonies, written sources and surveys. . . . His flowing narrative, with just enough background and context for each country, allows the poignant testimonies to speak for themselves. The overall impact is shocking."

David Alton in Catholic Times
"This brilliant book stands as a sharp rebuke to those of us who enjoy freedom of religion and freedom of speech but are indifferent to the plight of those who do not. . . . Shortt's painstakingly researched account should act as a much-needed wake-up call."

Times Literary Supplement
"Shortt's primary aim is simple and commendable — namely, to give a voice to those Christians whose experience of more or less direct oppression appears to be willfully ignored by the rest of humanity."

Commonweal
"The book's value lies not only in the rich personal testimonies, but also in the clearing away of persistent stereotypes and misconceptions."

Catholic Library World
"Shortt uses both research and extensive travel to describe and document in searing detail beatings, murder, arson, and other tribulations being endured by Christians around the world. . . . This important book is not a shrill, overly dramatic screed, but a careful, sober study of the terrible conditions endured by Christians. . . . Highly recommended."

Christianity Today
"Shortt argues that Christians across the world are persecuted more than any other religious group."

Christian Science Monitor
"Focused yet far-ranging. . . . Shortt begins with the premise 'that freedom of belief and association are unqualified goods' and proceeds to examine countries — including several non-Muslim ones — that deny them to Christians. Shortt relies on interviews he conducted in seven countries he visited, reports released by international Christian aid organizations as well as Amnesty International, and scholarly and other books. . . . He eschews polemics and unhesitatingly criticizes both historical and recent Christian violence against Muslims and others."
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