My blogfriend (and wedding reception guest!) Shane Deichman was kind enough to join Stephen Pampinella in reviewing my monograph, Revolutionary Strategies in Early Christianity: The 4GW Against Rome, and the COIN to Save It. From Shane’s review:
Wizards of Oz: Review: tdaxp’s Revolutionary Strategies
Dan has done a remarkable job applying contemporary theories of warfare and network science to the early Christian / late Roman era. The most notable strength in Revolutionary Strategies is his inventive correlation of the defensive strategies employed by Caiaphas (the chief antagonist of Jesusâ€™s ministries) to those of Diocletian (the late-3rd century Roman emperor who ordered the most severe persecution of the Christian faithful). Accompanying this analysis is a very cogent application of the theories of Boyd (Penetrate – Isolate – Subvert – Reorient – Reharmonize, or PISRR), with modern examples like Vichy France that match the dynamics in the early Christian church.
Most significantly, Danâ€™s book opens several new fronts on the debate over the nature of insurgency â€“ and counterinsurgency. For instance, is the ex post facto presumption of â€œco-optionâ€ by the splinter Jewish sect that has become the Christian church practical? Or, rather, was the Christian faith â€œculturally appropriatedâ€ by the Roman empire upon Emperor Constantineâ€™s conversion to Christianity in the early 4th century? While Dan asserts the former through the hypernetworking of the Apostle Paul, I believe this is a topic worthy of broader study. For instance, was Paul (nÃ©e Saul of Tarsus, a Pharisee) savvy enough to realize that his peers in Jewish leadership were attracting the ire of Rome? Did Paulâ€™s ministries throughout the Mediterranean seek to increase the rift between Jerusalem and the splinter sect of Christian faithful? And were the Gospels written in a manner to give Rome (and particularly Pilate) a â€œpassâ€ in the crucifixion of Jesus? (Note that three of the four Gospels were published immediately prior to the First Jewish-Roman War and the subsequent destruction of the Temple in 70 A.D.)
Relatedly, Mark Shea (the prominent Catholic podcaster whose show I subscribe to) discusses two of my posts. His post, “A Guy with a Blog Wants to Annex Mexico” begins by discussing the Manifest Destiny of the American Nation, but neatly ties it into my discussion of multiple inventions and multiple evolutions. Thanks Mark!