The Dawkins Delusion? by Alister McGrath

This is a small book, merely 100 pages, written as a thiestic response to Richard Dawkins’s book The God Delusion. Alister McGrath, the primary author, studied chemistry and molecular biophysics at Oxford, and moved on to study Christian theology, specialising in issues of science and religion.

Naturally, I had already read Dawkins’s book (also reviewed in this blog) before coming to this one. To summarise, I was dissatisfied with his arguments against God, disappointed by the ranting, arrogant tone of the book, and unnerved by the deceptive tactic of bombarding the reader with vague negativity about theism (and by that I mean the way Dawkins constantly provides poor quotes from thiests, with the design of infusing the notion that we’re all idiots; persuasion by pressure of numbers rather than by rational argument).

The Dawkins Delusion?, however, was a joy to read. It offered clarification of many objections I had already formulated in my mind, highlighted others I hadn’t seen, and it presented everything in a respectful tone. Reading it was like having poison drawn out of my body.

My only objection is in the title of the volume. Okay, it’s perhaps the perfect title for eye-catchability, but it’s kind of cheeky – something that Dawkins has no problem being, but something the Christian opposition should rise above. The title will instantly raise the heckles of Dawkins’s supporters, when the real aim should be to win them over to a more rational point of view.

Other than that, superb. I happen to think Dawkins’s book is crafty and dangerous (again, consult my review for justification), so I recommend reading The Dawkins Delusion? as an essential companian. Read both and make up your own mind.