Against Innocence: Gillian Rose's Reception and Gift of Faith

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Hymns Ancient and Modern Ltd, 2008 - Religion - 203 pages
Gillian Rose (1947-95) was arguably the most original and significant recent philosopher of the Continental tradition in the English-speaking world. Originally from a secular Jewish background, her thought evolved towards deeper sympathy for both Jewish and Christian religious tradition. And she chose to be baptized on her deathbed. Struck down by cancer in the prime of her career, she is known for her lyrical memoir Love's Work, written during her final illness. But she was also a notable critic of prevalent philosophic and theological fashions: postmodernism, 'Holocaust piety', Radical Orthodoxy. This is the first systematic study of Rose's profound, often difficult, but always thought-provoking work as a whole. Starting from her baptism, it is an attempt to interpret that final commitment of faith in the light of her earlier thought. Above all: her testimony to the demands of the 'broken middle', where thinking is most pulled apart but also most alive. Andrew Shanks is the Canon Theologian of Manchester Cathedral.Amongst his previous works are Faith in Honesty (2005) and The Other Calling (2007). 'This book offers its readers something that is urgently needed, a clear, lively and readable 'way in' to the difficult, but fascinating writings of Gillian Rose, one of the most dauntingly original and significant social critics and thinkers of our time. Her seemingly unaccountable and yet, at a deeper level, profoundly consistent spiritual and intellectual journey now appears to be of the greatest importance to all of us.' The Rt Revd Simon Barrington-Ward, former Bishop of Coventry 'Gillian Rose admired 'Miss Marple' amongst a multitude of thinkers from an astonishing range of sources. Her own truly formidable intelligence displayed itself in writings which Andrew Shanks splendidly makes it possible for us to 'read'. He is rightly concerned with her passion for sustaining long-term institutions for those of profoundly different mind, more or less free of delusions of innocence, and capable of negotiating unspeakable memories. The very intensity of her thinking brought her to 'hope out of hell', to Christian faith, and to baptism on her death bed from cancer in mid-career. Andrew Shanks shows us why we should take her very seriously indeed.' Ann Loades, CBE, Professorial Fellow St Chad's College, and Professor Emerita of Divinity, University of Durham,

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