Augustine's Intellectual Conversion: The Journey from Platonism to Christianity / Edition 1

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Overview

This book examines Augustine's intellectual conversion from Platonism to Christianity, as described at Confessions 7.9.13-21.27. It is widely assumed that this occurred in the summer of 386, shortly before Augustine's volitional conversion in the garden at Milan. Brian Dobell argues, however, that Augustine's intellectual conversion did not occur until the mid 390s, and develops this claim by comparing Confessions 7.9.13-21.27 with a number of important passages and themes from Augustine's early writings. He thus invites the reader to consider anew the problem of Augustine's conversion in 386: was it to Platonism or Christianity? His original and important study will be of interest to a wide range of readers in the history of philosophy and the history of theology.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780521513395
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press
  • Publication date: 12/31/2009
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 268
  • Product dimensions: 5.98 (w) x 8.98 (h) x 0.75 (d)

Meet the Author

Brian Dobell is Assistant Professor of Philosophy at the University of Balamand.

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Table of Contents

Preface vii

Note on translations and references ix

Chronological table of Augustine's writings x

List of abbreviations and texts xii

Introduction: Augustine's conversion to Christianity 1

Part 1 The way of Authority and 'The Falsity of Photinus' 29

1 The way of authority 31

2 The development of Augustine's Christology 75

Part II The way of Reason and the Ascent of the Soul 109

3 The way of reason 111

4 The problem of evil and the development of Augustine's metaphysics 138

5 The graded ascent 183

6 The rejection of Platonic ascent 203

7 The Ostia ascent 213

Conclusion: Augustine the Porphyrian 228

Appendix: true and false in Soliloquies 11 237

Bibliography 239

Index 246

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