Review Of "Christians Among The Virtues: Theological Conversations With Ancient And Modern Ethics" By S. Hauerwas And C. Pinches

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A revival of interest in the virtues has been stimulated by Alasdair MacIntyre's influential critique of ethical theories that attempt to discover purely formal moral principles that will create just societies without commitments to any particular vision of the good. In this joint study, Hauerwas (Divinity School, Duke Univ.) and Pinches (Univ. of Scranton) make an important contribution to an analysis of the place of the virtues in Christian ethics. The study is particularly timely in that it enters into dialogue, not only with MacIntyre, but also with recent champions of ethics of virtue like John Milbank, John Casey, and Martha Nussbaum, as well as classical thinkers like Aristotle and St. Thomas Aquinas. Conversations with these authors reveal how context-dependent the notion of the good life is and how virtues like prudence, courage, patience, and obedience take strikingly different forms when molded by Christian versus secular presuppositions. Unlike many jointly authored books, this one is a genuinely collaborative effort, each chapter being thoroughly worked over by both contributors. Highly recommended. Upper-division undergraduate; graduate; faculty.


This work is freely available courtesy of Choice Reviews. The review has been reproduced in full in the abstract field.

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