Going Clear: Scientology, Hollywood, and the Prison of Belief

Front Cover
Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group, Jan 17, 2013 - Religion - 448 pages
68 Reviews
Reviews aren't verified, but Google checks for and removes fake content when it's identified
NATIONAL BESTSELLER • NATIONAL BOOK AWARD AND NATIONAL BOOK CRITICS CIRCLE AWARD FINALIST •  From the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of The Looming Tower comes “an utterly necessary story” (The Wall Street Journal) that pulls back the curtain on the church of Scientology: one of the most secretive organizations at work today. • The Basis for the HBO Documentary.

Scientology presents itself as a scientific approach to spiritual enlightenment, but its practices have long been shrouded in mystery. Now Lawrence Wright—armed with his investigative talents, years of archival research, and more than two hundred personal interviews with current and former Scientologists—uncovers the inner workings of the church. We meet founder L. Ron Hubbard, the highly imaginative but mentally troubled science-fiction writer, and his tough, driven successor, David Miscavige. We go inside their specialized cosmology and language. We learn about the church’s legal attacks on the IRS, its vindictive treatment of critics, and its phenomenal wealth. We see the church court celebrities such as Tom Cruise while consigning its clergy to hard labor under billion-year contracts. Through it all, Wright asks what fundamentally comprises a religion, and if Scientology in fact merits this Constitutionally-protected label.

What people are saying - Write a review

User ratings

5 stars
4 stars
3 stars
2 stars
1 star

Reviews aren't verified, but Google checks for and removes fake content when it's identified

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - LibraryCin - LibraryThing

3.5 stars This is a detailed look at the history of Scientology, including a biography of its founder, L. Ron Hubbard. The author talked to many people who have left Scientology, as well as a few ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - Castlelass - LibraryThing

One of my friends escaped from a Scientology “cult” (her term) when she was a teen. She has told me about her experiences, and I wanted to find out more about the organization. This book is a ... Read full review


Going Overboard
The Faith Factory
Dropping the Body
In Service to the Stars
The Future Is Ours
Bohemian Rhapsody
TC and
The Investigation
Acknowledgments and a Note on Sources

Other editions - View all

Common terms and phrases

About the author (2013)

LAWRENCE WRIGHT is a staff writer for The New Yorker, a playwright, and a screenwriter. He is the best-selling author of the novel, The End of October, and ten books of nonfiction, including Going Clear, God Save Texas, and The Looming Tower, winner of the Pulitzer Prize. He and his wife are longtime residents of Austin, Texas.

Bibliographic information