Will it Liberate?: Questions About Liberation Theology (1986)

Date: January 14, 2013

Questions About Liberation Theology
The book that changed the evaluation of liberation theology around the world.


“Will It Liberate? Puts in orderly fashion all the right questions and the historical context in which they must be answered.”

James V. Schall, S.J.
Georgetown University

“An intellectual and moral tour de force. Novak represents a rare find for the poor—an advocate with a realistic blueprint for achieving both economic and political liberation… a find well worth celebrating.”

Kent R. Hill
The Institute on Religion and Democracy

“Michael Novak pays liberation theologians the highest compliment: he attends closely and sympathetically to their arguments and then engages them with his own understanding of how the world works, and how it might be made to work better. Novak knows that the questions raised by liberation theology will not go away. More important, he does not want them to go away but to be pursued relentlessly. Unstinting concern for the poor and oppressed, he persuasively argues, will lead to a social order that is both more just and more democratic than most liberation theologians think possible. The debate over liberation theology began more than a decade ago. This book may well mark the beginning of its second and more promising stage.”

Richard John Neuhaus

“Will It Liberate? is brilliant. Very powerful reasoning, yet calm, polite, and humane. The force of the argumentation is very convincing… the knowledge of Latin America in this book is stronger and deeper than in The Spirit of Democratic Capitalism. It is a magnificent work.”

Howard J. Wiarda
University of Massachusetts, Amherst

“Michael Novak’s work is challenging. We often disagree sharply in our interpretations and assessments of liberation theology, but he raises important issues which call for clarification and response.”

Arthur F. McGovern, S.J.
Author of Marxism: An American Christian Perspective

“Will It Liberate? Demonstrates once again the power and subtlety of one of the great minds of our age. Novak treats with sympathy the underlying, humanistic wellsprings of this ideology. His exposure of the shortcomings and limitations of liberation theology is both convincing and unassailable.

Steve Forbes, Jr.
Forbes Magazine



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