By James L. Heft

ISBN-10: 0195131614

ISBN-13: 9780195131611

ISBN-10: 1423760468

ISBN-13: 9781423760467

This ebook deals a sequence of reflections at the kingdom of Christianity, and particularly Catholicism, on the planet this day. the center piece of the amount is a lecture through the well known thinker Charles Taylor, from which the identify of the ebook is taken. The lecture, brought at Dayton collage in January of 1996, provided Taylor the chance to talk about the non secular dimensions of his highbrow commitment--dimensions left implicity in his philosophical writing. in reality, this is often the single position the place Taylor, a Roman Catholic, spells out his theological perspectives and his feel of the cultural placement of Catholicism, its historical past and trajectory. He makes use of the social gathering to argue opposed to the typical declare that hindrances to non secular trust in smooth tradition are epistemic--that they need to do with the triumph of the clinical worldview. the genuine hindrances, says Taylor, are ethical and non secular, having to do with the ancient disasters of spiritual institutions.

Four famous commentators on faith and society, Protestant, Catholic, have been invited to answer Taylor's lecture: William M. Shea, George Marsden, Jean Bethke Elshtain, and Rosemary Luling-Haughton. Their chapters supply various astute reflections at the tensions among faith and modernity, and particularly at the function that Catholicism can and will play in modern society. the amount concludes with Taylor's perceptive and considerate reaction to his interlocutors. A Catholic Modernity offers probably the most considerate conversations so far concerning the position of the Catholic Church within the smooth global, and extra ordinarily, concerning the position of faith in democratic liberal societies.

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Extra resources for A Catholic Modernity?: Charles Taylor's Marianist Award Lecture, with responses by William M. Shea, Rosemary Luling Haughton, George Marsden, and Jean Bethke Elshtain

Example text

Both secular humanists and antihumanists concur in the revolutionary story; that is, they see us as having been liberated from the illusion of a good beyond life and thus enabled to affirm ourselves. This may take the form of an Enlightenment endorsement of benevolence and justice, or it may be the charter for the full affirmation of the will to power—or "the free play of the signifier," the aesthetics of the self, or whatever the current version is. But it remains within the same post-revolutionary climate.

I do not think that postmodernism is a decisive break with or advance over modernity or the other phases of the Enlightenment. In some ways, it is a retreat from the achievements of the moderate, naturalist, and pragmatist phase of the Enlightenment prevailing in the United States in the first half of the twentieth century. Postmodern theory's decline over the past few years has been matched by a vigorous reassertion of the intention of American philosophers to speak to significant ethical, political, and social problems.

I do not think that postmodernism is a decisive break with or advance over modernity or the other phases of the Enlightenment. In some ways, it is a retreat from the achievements of the moderate, naturalist, and pragmatist phase of the Enlightenment prevailing in the United States in the first half of the twentieth century. Postmodern theory's decline over the past few years has been matched by a vigorous reassertion of the intention of American philosophers to speak to significant ethical, political, and social problems.

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A Catholic Modernity?: Charles Taylor's Marianist Award Lecture, with responses by William M. Shea, Rosemary Luling Haughton, George Marsden, and Jean Bethke Elshtain by James L. Heft


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