Theology without Metaphysics: God, Language, and the Spirit of Recognition

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Cambridge University Press, Sep 15, 2011 - Religion
One of the central arguments of post-metaphysical theology is that language is inherently 'metaphysical' and consequently that it shoehorns objects into predetermined categories. Because God is beyond such categories, it follows that language cannot apply to God. Drawing on recent work in theology and philosophy of language, Kevin Hector develops an alternative account of language and its relation to God, demonstrating that one need not choose between fitting God into a metaphysical framework, on the one hand, and keeping God at a distance from language, on the other. Hector thus elaborates a 'therapeutic' response to metaphysics: given the extent to which metaphysical presuppositions about language have become embedded in common sense, he argues that metaphysics can be fully overcome only by defending an alternative account of language and its application to God, so as to strip such presuppositions of their apparent self-evidence and release us from their grip.

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1 Therapy for metaphysics
2 Concepts rules and the Spirit of recognition
3 Meaning and meanings
4 Reference and presence
5 Truth and correspondence
6 Emancipating theology

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About the author (2011)

Kevin Hector is Assistant Professor of Theology and of the Philosophy of Religions at the University of Chicago Divinity School. His essays have appeared in Modern Theology, the International Journal of Systematic Theology, the Scottish Journal of Theology, the Journal of Religion and Expository Times.

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