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Even though it has been one of the most powerful and disturbing chapters in the history of Western civilization, the Inquisition has been largely ignored by general historians. Bestselling author Jona…

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Even though it has been one of the most powerful and disturbing chapters in the history of Western civilization, the Inquisition has been largely ignored by general historians. Bestselling author Jonathan Kirsch seeks to correct that oversight in his new book The Grand Inquisitor's Manual: A History of Terror in the Name of God. In the process of shedding light on this centuries-long, horrific, gruesome, and grotesque absurdity, Kirsch comes to some interesting conclusions, the most important being that the Inquisition served as a sort of blueprint for the machinations of full-spectrum state terror as practiced in Nazi Germany and Stalinist Russia. Further, some of the ugly episodes of American history such as McCarthyism and the internment of Japanese Americans in World War II also stem from this inquisitorial mindset, he concludes. And because we haven't come to terms with this dark past, we're still at it with our waterboarding, Guantanamo, Abu Ghraib, CIA secret prsions, etc. Hear an interview with Jonathan Kirsch.

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