Christ, Ethics and Tragedy: Essays in Honour of Donald by Kenneth Surin

By Kenneth Surin

The essays during this quantity represent the complaints of a convention at the paintings of Ddonald MacKinnon, this century's so much influential British theologian. MacKinnon's paintings levels from Aristotelean metaphysics to trinitarian mirrored image to Marxism. Surin's participants commence with MacKinnon's writings and flow directly to talk about such issues as his relation to Barth's theology, the talk betwen realism and idealism, Trinity and ontology, incarnation and kenosis, the matter of evil, and MacKinnon's moral reflections.

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1:3), the 'image of the invisible God' (Col. 1:15). Having mentioned Goodman's distinction and briefly sketched its application to theology, I need to qualify it slightly by pointing out that it is not as sharp a distinction as he thinks. Common sense suggests that some representations are like what they represent - we talk of the likeness between a portrait and its subject. In a review article on Goodman's Languages of Art17 C. F. Presley suggests that whilst in general Goodman is right to differentiate representation and resemblance, 'In representational systems that are realistic, however, one might expect symbols to look like their denotata' (p.

It does not follow that we are being deceived and manipulated all the time. Nor need we conclude, when faced with texts from a very different culture, in this case one without our admiration for neutral depiction (just because that ideal had not yet emerged), that they must be totally unintelligible to us. A major part of the fascination of studying alien texts lies in the challenge that they often present to our conceptions of how to tell the truth. It might not seem so shocking, then, that, confronted with what sounds like incipient gnosticism within the Church, some anonymous pastor, perhaps about AD 125, took the name of Peter to justify his right to castigate the heretics.

Cambridge, 1985), vol. 1, pp. 248-92. 35 L. Wittgenstein, Zettel (Oxford, 1967), section 40. 36 Wittgenstein, Investigations, Part II, section 11, p. 229. 37 Taylor, 'Theories', p. 273. 38 Dummett, 'Biblical Exegesis', pp. 57-8. 39 MacKinnon, Explorations, p. 22. 40 MacKinnon, 'Idealism and Realism', Explorations, p. 138. ' 1 A similar judgement might, I think, be applied to his own work. For few modern philosophers and theologians have been more concerned with the variety of ways in which we attempt to represent what transcends us, while yet insisting on its transcendence, than MacKinnon.

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