Book Launch | What Christians Believe: The Story of God and People in Minimal English

Anna Wierzbicka’s new book takes a radically novel approach to the task of communicating “what Christians believe” to a wide audience. The Story of God and People at the heart of the book sets out these essentials in narrative form, in 40 mini-chapters. It is unlike any other introduction to Christianity, in that it systematically uses simple words and does not assume any previous familiarity with Christian faith or vocabulary. The words used in this “Story” are also universal: while it is written in English, it is not phrased in “full English”, shaped by history, culture and tradition, but in “Minimal English”, in words which, evidence strongly suggests, correspond to the shared core of all languages.

The Story of God and People demonstrates the effectiveness of Minimal English as a tool for global understanding, and as such will be of interest to anthropologists, philosophers, theologians, those interested in education, communication studies, translation studies, as well as linguistics. Above all, this “Story”, together with the 40 commentaries on the 40 mini-chapters and the introductory background chapters, hopes to articulate what Christians believe, making this clear for anyone interested, regardless of their background, religious or non-religious.

The launch will be opened by Professor Will Christie, Director of the Humanities Research Centre. The book will be launched by the anthropologist Professor Howard Morphy (Australian National University) and the theologian Father Anthony Kelly (Australian Catholic University).

The launch will be followed by light refreshments. Please register for catering purposes.

Date & time

Thu 16 May 2019, 12–1.30pm


Lady Wilson Seminar Room, Sir Roland Wilson Building, Building #120, McCoy Circuit, ANU


Professor Anna Wierzbicka
Professor Howard Morphy
Father Anthony Kelly (Australian Catholic University)


Penny Brew
+61 2 6125 4357


Updated:  30 April 2019/Responsible Officer:  Head, Centre/Page Contact:  CASS Marketing & Communications