Psychology professor Beck authors new bookPosted February 06, 2012
Dr. Richard Beck, associate professor of psychology, has written a new book, The Authenticity of Faith: The Varieties and Illusions of Religious Experience. The book explores Sigmund Freud's idea that belief in God is merely a comforting or wishful thought. Beck uses laboratory studies to examine how Christians respond to religious differences, art, and doctrine in modern culture. Through this lens, he produces a compelling and lively examination of Freud's ideas.
“Richard Beck artfully blends psychological theory, empirical research, and theology to tackle a challenging question," says Julie J. Exline, associate professor of psychology at Case Western Reserve University. "This well-crafted, thoughtful, and engaging text is guaranteed to provide readers with plenty of food for thought.”
Beck, an ACU graduate with a Ph.D. in experimental psychology from Southern Methodist University, has taught at ACU since 1998 and chaired the Department of Psychology since 2005. He has authored numerous scholarly articles, mainly relating to psychology and spirituality, and his energetic teaching style and classes are a favorite on campus. "The Authenticity of Faith represents my long personal and professional engagement with Freud's critique of religious belief," Beck says on his blog. The book is available through ACU Press.
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