On the Varieties of Interpretation
Among the many fruitful and challenging sites for mutual engagement of theology and philosophy, the renewed study of St. Thomas Aquinas has proven to be both lively and controversial. Given particular impetus in recent years by the widespread assessment of modernity that occupies many academic disciplines today, this study is both interesting and relevant to a number of intellectual debates, even as it demands for itself the highest level of scholarship. The essays here arise out of a conference held in 2001 at Heythrop College, University of London, which was introduced by Bishop Malcolm McMahon, OP. This collection reflects the state of Aquinas studies throughout North America, Britain, and Northern Europe, and provides an introduction to this diversity for a general and scholarly readership. Widely differing and often starkly contrasting and even contradictory interpretations of Aquinas are to be found here, which by their very differences invite readers to go deeper into the background from which each emerges and so to find for themselves a way to contemplate Aquinas.
“These rich and varied readings of Aquinas and Aquinas scholarship can themselves be profitably read in many ways and by different audiences. The collection demonstrates the vitality of the many-faceted 'new wave' of scholarship emerging after a decade of inattention following the Second Vatican Council.” —Theological Studies
“. . . the collection is sufficiently wide-ranging to cover most of the areas of Aquinas's thought getting attention at present, and the fundamental question of 'faith and reason' is considered in each chapter.” —New Blackfriars
“This excellent collection of rich, sometimes controversial papers is an attempt to set the study of Thomas Aquinas in context and to extend our understanding of Aquinas’s thought in the process. It is indispensable reading for anyone interested in the contemporary state of Thomistic studies and its history.” —Eleonore Stump, Henle Professor of Philosophy, St. Louis University
“This is a fine collection further demonstrating the sheer variety and vitality of contemporary Thomistic studies. By challenging and unsettling established assumptions the essayists help to free the work of one of the greatest educators in the ways of Christian wisdom to speak with fresh relevance. The result is an invaluable resource for teachers and students of theology alike.” —Paul D. Murray, Durham University