My Review of Michael Shermer’s The Moral Arc

22320454Arguing that it is science and reason which has helped to bend the moral arc toward justice, truth, and freedom, New York Times Best Selling Author Michael Shermer’s newest book The Moral Arc: How Science and Reason Lead Humanity Toward Truth, Justice, and Freedom (Henry Holt), is a detailed and comprehensive argument in which he suggests that humanity has become more moral through the on-going influence of the Age of Enlightenment and Reason.

Divided into three sections The Moral Arc Explained, The Moral Arc Applied, and The Moral Arc Amended, the reader is taken on a deep journey filled charts and graphs and discussions of studies which has been done across the fields of political science and behavior as well as substantial philosophical discussions about human rights as well as the power of human beings to do great evil. Shermer, who is also the publisher of Skeptic magazine, is a strong proponent of rationalism and scientific methodology.

At times I was overwhelmed with the detailed writing and arguments as well as with the breadth of subjects being presented. At times I also disagreed with him on various issues though I understood his perspective (notably about religion often being a hindrance to moral progress).

But, The Moral Arc is a thought provoking book about the challenges of being human in the best sense of the word.

I can see this book being used across the fields of the social sciences and even religion as source of discussion and debate about just how moral are we humans in this day and age.

I rate this book a “good” read.

Note: I received an ARC of this book via the Amazon Vine program in exchange for a review. I was not required to write a positive review.

 

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