This text is somewhat okay--in that it gives an outline of certain theological issues and very briefly makes notation of development in these areas.
MyThis text is somewhat okay--in that it gives an outline of certain theological issues and very briefly makes notation of development in these areas.
My main issue with this work is that she finishes the discussion of every topic in about a paragraph or so, which amounts to maybe half a page, maybe two hundred words. The work is generally uncritical in its use of language, too general to be accurate and too brief to be useful, and, aside from a few declarations that certain things were/are certain ways, she never expounds on anything she says in any meaningful way.
Of course, this is not a treatise but an introduction. I would rather call this an outline, an outline that consists in, truly, sketching its topics, to a skeletal degree, where the slightest nudge will cause the structure to collapse....more
This book is outlined in such a way that McGrath selects a few excerpts from larger works of theologians throughout the history of theology in order tThis book is outlined in such a way that McGrath selects a few excerpts from larger works of theologians throughout the history of theology in order to represent a "perspective" on a certain subject (salvation, eschatology, church, etc.).
It doesn't seem like it was meant for individual study but mostly group discussion. Unless you are willing to give this text a close read, though it is difficult given that each excerpt is probably three pages at most, I wouldn't recommend this book outside a group book study. Mainly because I think the insights one will get from this book will derive mostly from how the excerpts relate to contemporary theological issues and ways of thinking--which will be difficult to determine ex nihilo, sometimes. At any rate, it's a somewhat strong introduction to theology if read in conjunction with other theological works....more
This book was really illuminating for me. I read it because I am interested in eventually getting to Derrida--after having read some Derrida and preseThis book was really illuminating for me. I read it because I am interested in eventually getting to Derrida--after having read some Derrida and presently reading Derrida. Barthes integrates Saussure's linguistics (semiology and the notion of the sign) with Marxist ideas about history and ideology to examine the notion of myth. Barthes's analysis of myth is very similar to Derrida's work in that he proposes the problem of the machine vs. the event by drawing a similar dialectical between the bourgeois and the worker (or mythical language and political language).
Barthes basically says that a myth is a form of language that takes a symbol (or a given) and, with the form that inaugurates the myth (the intention of the myth), distorts the symbol so as to make it seem natural (so as to make it seem eternal as opposed to historical). In this way, Barthes thinks that the bourgeois, by establishing its ideology through myth, is able to exist as modern thought itself.
There are very interesting parallels (albeit with a somewhat differently nuanced vocabulary) between Barthes's work here and Derrida's. ...more
Catherine Belsey writes lucidly, in this introduction to poststructuralism. She elucidates the works of Saussure, Derrida, Foucault, and Lacan, amongCatherine Belsey writes lucidly, in this introduction to poststructuralism. She elucidates the works of Saussure, Derrida, Foucault, and Lacan, among others. She spells out very clearly what she means by the poststructuralist tradition when she writes, “The history of poststructuralism is the story of the way Saussure’s ideas were taken up by later generations, especially in France, and particularly after the Second World War, when the history of National Socialism, and of French collaboration with it—seemed to demand an explanation that existing theories of culture were unable to provide.” (10)
I would definitely recommend this book to anyone who is trying to get a foothold in the poststructuralist tradition, trying to come to a place where reading Derrida or Foucalt is possible. The questions that are raised in this book are, even if they aren't useful for reading specific works of the authors she mentions, are interesting and valuable in and of themselves. She covers topics from the meaning of language to the structures of power that inhibit and inhabit social relations to the truth and differance.
I will probably revisit this book a year or so from now because I've found that these books are great at connecting very general themes one may miss in the complexity of it all....more
In this book Charles Hartshorne develops his idea of God. Most of his writings took place in the era of positivism, so most of his thought is orientedIn this book Charles Hartshorne develops his idea of God. Most of his writings took place in the era of positivism, so most of his thought is oriented toward answering their criticisms (such as that the idea of God has not intellectual or meaningful import). His idea of God gets its intelligibility from the intuition that God is not the greatest conceivable being as has been classically conceived (Hartshorne criticizes this notion as being similarly erroneous to the notion of a largest number) but is "unsurpassable." Harsthorne says that this notion of "unsurpassable" is the meaning of "worthy of worship," where there can only be one being worthy of worship.
In this work, at least, Hartshorne's development of the concept of God doesn't use Whitehead's metaphysics as much as I thought it would. His central idea is that God is unsurpassable, and so he doesn't really need Whitehead's stuff to apply this not only to God having an unsurpassable awareness (and therefore knowledge) but also unsurpassable in love, etc. I think it's a great resource if one is developing the idea of God strictly from a logical perspective--showing that the concept is intelligible without as much as a metaphysical scheme....more