Rodney Stark is the author of How the West Won, The Victory of Reason, The Rise of Christianity, God's Battalions, and many other books. He serves as Distinguished Professor of the Social Sciences at Baylor University, where he is codirector of the Institute for Studies of Religion. A Pulitzer Prize nominee, Stark has won three Distinguished Book Awards from the Society for the Scientific Study of Religion. He also served as president of that organization, and of the Association for the Sociology of Religion. Before earning his PhD at the University of California, Berkeley, Stark was a staff writer for several major publications.