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9780813228945
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v2.1 Reference

Supper at Emmaus

Great Themes in Western Culture and Intellectual History

Supper at Emmaus traces various important intellectual topics from the ancient world to the modern period. Generally, as in its treatment of the question of whether the long-standing contrast between cyclical and linear views of history is helpful, it introduces important thinkers who have considered the question. A preoccupation of the book is the appearance and reappearance across the centuries of patterns used to organize temporal and cultural experience. After an opening essay on transcendental truth and cultural relativism, the second chapter traces a distinction, common in historical writings during the past two centuries, between an alleged ancient classical "cyclic" view of time and history, used to describe the claimed repetitiveness of and similarities between historical events ("nothing is new under the sun"), and a contrasting Jewish-Christian linear view, sometimes described as providential in that it moves through a series of unique events to some end intended by God. In the latter, history is "about something," the education of the human race or the redemption of humankind. As in each of the remaining essays, the book then attempts to draw out the limitations of what the current consensus on this topic has become. It does this for such things as our current understanding of religious toleration, humanism, natural law, and teleology. Some of the essays, such as those on debate about Augustine's understanding of marriage or the concluding illustrated essay on the baroque city of Lecce, are published for the first time. Others are based on previously published contributions to the scholarly literature, though generally each of these chapters concludes with a postscript that engages with current scholarly debate on the subject.

About the Authors

Glenn W. Olsen is the author of The Turn to Transcendence and The Road to Emmaus, both published by CUA Press.

Reviews

"Olsen's knowledge of both original sources and historians is as deep as it is wide. He moves effortlessly among writers in many disciplines and languages For the pleasure of reading Olsen's sparkling prose and for the value to students of his bibliographies, this collection is warmly recommended to all academic libraries supporting history programs."—Daniel Boice, Catholic Library World

"0"—

"Glenn Olsen is one of the most remarkably learned and wide-ranging historians of our times, a profoundly perceptive student of religious history in its fullest cultural context and an acute critic of prevailing historical fashions. -"—James Hitchcock, St. Louis University

"Modernity is not entitled to a free pass, and Glenn Olsen does not give it one. His concerns are more deep than trendy. He recognizes values in tradition and is skeptical about some aspects of the Enlightenment and all postulated earthly Golden Ages. He argues firmly that the religious dimension of homo sapiens, although perhaps changing in expression and concerns, cannot be blithely dismissed as an atavistic trait destined soon to disappear in a brave new secularized world. The challenge is to discover positive ways to connect religion to secular life. The present volume contains eleven studies, two previously unpublished, written from 1980 to the present, most after 2000. These studies point out the weaknesses, and the consequences, of many ill-considered contemporary ideological positions."—John Howe, author of Before the Gregorian Reform: The Latin Church at the Turn of the First Millennium

9780813228945 : supper-at-emmaus-olsen-olsen
Hardback
360 Pages
$69.95 USD

Other Titles by Glenn W. Olsen

On the Road to Emmaus

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Apr 2012 - The Catholic University of America Press
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The Turn to Transcendence

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The Crisis of Western Education

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