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Bonaventure, the Body, and the Aesthetics of Salvation

Bonaventure, the Body, and the Aesthetics of Salvation

  • Publication planned for: March 2020
  • availability: Not yet published - available from March 2020
  • format: Hardback
  • isbn: 9781108485371


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About the Authors
  • In this work of historical theology, Rachel Davies considers the relationship between aesthetics and anthropology in Bonaventure's thought, and shows how bodily diminishment can become a sign and source of the self's renewal. Drawing from texts like the Collations on the Six Days, and the Major Life of Francis, Davies reconfigures traditional accounts of the fallen body's rebellion against the soul and emphasizes instead the soul's original abandonment of the body. Her interpretation draws attention to the crucial but undervalued role that Bonaventure assigns to the body in the self's coming-to-be, showing how contemplation involves the soul's tender recovery of the body it once rejected. Though contemplation makes body-soul integrity possible again, Davies argues that the body never fully recovers from its primordial alienation. Instead, Bonaventure suggests that individuals can experience brokenness and healing at the same time, and that suffering bodies can become paschal spaces, graced and open to beatific wholeness.

    • Shows how Bonaventure can help us rethink and revise difficult tendencies in Christian thought, like its often negative portrayal of the body
    • Demonstrates a way of relating to bodily diminishment that is open to transformation while remaining honest about the destructive nature of suffering
    • Draws from texts like the Collations on the Six Days, the Tree of Life, and the Major Life of Francis, and explores how Bonaventure thinks the body participates in and in some ways even instigates the soul's journey
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    Product details

    • Publication planned for: March 2020
    • format: Hardback
    • isbn: 9781108485371
    • dimensions: 216 x 138 mm
    • availability: Not yet published - available from March 2020
  • Table of Contents

    1. Bonaventure's aesthetic vision
    2. Beaty and the soul's ascent in the Collations on the Six Days
    3. The journey of the body to God
    4. Diminishment and transfiguration in the Tree of Life
    5. Corporeality reclaimed in The Major Life of Francis
    6. Paschal bodies.

  • Author

    Rachel Davies, Australian Catholic University, Melbourne
    Rachel Davies is a research fellow at the Institute for Religion and Critical Inquiry, Australian Catholic University, Melbourne. She is co-editor of Suffering and the Christian Life (forthcoming).

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