Terry Eagleton vs. Alain de Botton

A while ago I read Alain de Botton’s Religion for Atheists (which for some reason was published in Dutch several months before the English edition). I was not too enthusiastic about the book (to put it mildly – and I did put it mildly in the review that I wrote). But then again, I’m no Terry Eagleton.

In the British journalThe Guardian, Eagleton published a short but brilliant review of De Botton’s book. Eagleton writes in his characteristic style, very readable, humorous, ironic, and with a conclusion that I found right on the mark:

What the book does, in short, is hijack other people’s beliefs, empty them of content and redeploy them in the name of moral order, social consensus and aesthetic pleasure. It is an astonishingly impudent enterprise. It is also strikingly unoriginal.