Benedict XVI


An upper-level introduction to the thought and theology of Pope Benedict XVI.

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An upper-level introduction to the thought and theology of Pope Benedict XVI.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780567034366
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury Academic
  • Publication date: 7/13/2010
  • Series: Guides for the Perplexed Series
  • Pages: 216
  • Product dimensions: 5.70 (w) x 8.60 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Meet the Author

Tracey Rowland is Dean and Associate Professor of Political Philosophy and Continental Theology at the John Paul II Institute (Melbourne), a member of the Centre for Theology and Philosophy at the University of Nottingham and a member of the editorial board of the English language edition of Communio, founded, among others, by Joseph Ratzinger. She is the author of Culture and the Thomist Tradition: After Vatican II (2003) and Ratzinger's Faith: The Theology of Benedict XVI (2008).

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Table of Contents

Chapter I: The Intellectual Antecedents and Contemporary Interlocutors:

Including the seminal contributions to Ratzinger's thought of: Sts. Augustine and Bonaventure, John Henry Newman, Romano Guardini, Peter Wust, Josef Pieper, Martin Buber, Theodore Häcker, Gottlieb Söhngen, Luigi Giussani, Hans Urs von Balthasar and Henri de Lubac SJ; and the works of interlocutors, Josef Rupert Geiselman, Walter Kasper, Hans Küng, and Paul Knitter. Karl Rahner fits in as both an early antecedent and an interlocutor.

Chapter II: The Response to the Modernist Crisis

This will include a guide through Ratzinger's many works relating to principles of scriptural interpretation, including documents of the Pontifical Biblical Commission produced under his chairmanship,; and also to his critique of the Suarezian account of Revelation which reached its zenith in the 1960s in the Dei Verbum document of the Second Vatican Council, which Ratzinger and Karl Rahner helped to draft, and the work on Revelation and Tradition co-authored by Ratzinger and Rahner.

Chapter III: The Response to Heidegger

This will include material from Ratzinger's Principles of Catholic Theology where he states that an understanding of the mediation of history in the realm of ontology is 'the fundamental crisis of our age'. It will also provide an exposition of Ratzinger's criticisms of Karl Rahner's approach to the crisis and his preference for the approach of von Balthasar.

Chapter IV: The Essential Difference of Christianity

This will cover themes in Ratzinger's seminal Introduction to Christianity (which was anything but an introduction) and more contemporary essays by Ratzinger, including his year 2000 Sorbonne Address, where he presents his understanding of what Christianity is within the context of other world religions. The controversial Regensburg Address will be covered here.

Chapter V: The Response to Kasper and Küng

This will cover the criticisms of Ratzinger's ecclesiology from Walter Kasper and Hans Küng and his responses to them. The seminal importance of Augustine and de Lubac for Ratzinger's ecclesiology will be covered here.

Chapter VI: The Theological Virtues

Since Ratzinger became Benedict XVI he has released two encyclicals: one on love (Deus Caritas Est 2007) and one on hope (Spe Salvi 2008). Since faith, hope and love are treated in theology as the three theological virtues, it is anticipated that a third encyclical will appear in the first half of 2009 on faith. This chapter will provide an overview of the major ideas in the three encyclicals and references to the most important commentaries thereon.

Chapter VII: The Importance of Beauty &other Augustinian Motifs

This will include an account of the significance of the transcendental of beauty in Ratzinger's theology and his various criticisms of contemporary mass culture, including the rock music industry. This will be placed in the context of his Augustinian personalism.

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