Qty:1
  • List Price: $17.00
  • Save: $5.52 (32%)
FREE Shipping on orders over $35.
Only 18 left in stock (more on the way).
Ships from and sold by Amazon.com.
Gift-wrap available.
FREE Shipping on orders over $35.
Condition: Used: Good
Have one to sell? Sell on Amazon
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See this image

Augustine for Armchair Theologians Paperback – September 30, 2002


See all 4 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Amazon Price New from Used from
Paperback
"Please retry"
$11.48
$7.49 $4.28
Year-End%20Deals%20in%20Books


Frequently Bought Together

Augustine for Armchair Theologians + Calvin for Armchair Theologians
Price for both: $25.52

Buy the selected items together
NO_CONTENT_IN_FEATURE

Best Books of the Year
Best Books of 2014
Looking for something great to read? Browse our editors' picks for 2014's Best Books of the Year in fiction, nonfiction, mysteries, children's books, and much more.

Product Details

  • Series: Armchair Theologians
  • Paperback: 222 pages
  • Publisher: Westminster John Knox Press (September 30, 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0664223729
  • ISBN-13: 978-0664223724
  • Product Dimensions: 5 x 0.5 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 5.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #788,294 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Library Journal

An associate professor of religious studies at Franklin and Marshall College in Pennsylvania, Cooper offers a kind of guided tour through the great theologian Augustine's Confessions summarizing here, explaining there, spicing the whole with substantial quotations from his own translations from the original. Augustine's life and mind are never out of place and always worth bringing to a new audience, so that while Cooper himself is somewhat overshadowed by Augustine, this cleanly written book should be a worthwhile addition to many libraries.
Copyright 2002 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Booklist

If this sounds like a popularization, well, it is. But except for its overly chipper cartoon illustrations, there is nothing condescending about it. Cooper follows the first nine books of the Confessiones closely, producing not so much an explication of Augustine's theology as a biography of the great Catholic convert, bishop, and doctor of the church. His citations from Augustine appear in his own translations, which contain more contemporary patter than the main text; as a result, Cooper's Augustine sounds more contemporarily vernacular than Cooper. Cooper incidentally shows how acute a psychologist Augustine was, not least of early childhood, as Garry Wills argued in Saint Augustine's Childhood (2001). The saint's long struggle with eros, flirtation with Manichaeism, mounting frustration with a worldly career, sudden enlightenment (an archetypal decision for Christ), and homecoming to Carthage, saddened by the successive deaths of mother, best friend, and son, become in Cooper's retelling a vivid illustration of Augustine's famous observation that God makes us for Himself, and our hearts are uneasy until we find rest in Him. Ray Olson
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

More About the Author

Discover books, learn about writers, read author blogs, and more.

Customer Reviews

3.7 out of 5 stars
Share your thoughts with other customers

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

16 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Eric Nelson on September 7, 2004
Format: Paperback
This book essentially just goes though Augustine's early life, following the outline in Augustine's Confessions. It uses the Confessions as an window to Augustine, assuming that readers would start with that book and graduate to others---not a bad idea.

It does really help make the Confessions even more accessible to readers unfamiliar with Augustine or his work.

The only downside is because this book focuses so heavily on his life as described in Confessions it fails to really wrestle with any of the issues that Augustine was so influential on later in his life (for example, the problem of grace and free will).

I'd like to give the book four stars, but am unable to change my star rating.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Stanford Gibson on September 30, 2006
Format: Paperback
This text is more of a chapter by chapter commentary on the confessions than an introduction to Augustine's thought in general. There is very little mention of his other great works. Cooper pretty much tells Augustine's personal story rather than produce an accessible intro to his works. But reviewing the book for what it is rather than what I thought it would be: This is an accessible commentary on the confessions that does a very good job highlighting the major themes and unpacking how Augustine theological assertions emerge from the telling of his story. He is obviously very familiar with the text and selects numerous and appropriate, poetically translated excerpts that convey a sense of Augustine's accessible and conversational style.

As for the illustrations: I found them to be well done, humorous, and have used a couple of them in presentations on Augustine. This distinguishes the `Armchair Theologian' series from the `For Beginner's' series, whose illustrations are almost always disappointing. I do have one critique. The illustrator had no qualms about portraying God in flippant, somewhat irreverent cartoon form which I think Augustine (along with much of the Judea-Islamic-Christian tradition with their great discomfort regarding images of God) would be pretty uncomfortable with. I found them just a little disconcerting myself.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By J. WHITE on January 14, 2011
Format: Paperback
I have read the 4 and 3 star reviews and find them to wanting. They are expecting too much for the introductory series. This book, like all of the Armchair theologian series, is an entryway into the thinkers that have been and still are the most influential voices of Western Christianity. This book is a fantastic look at Augustine's life and his basic, early theology. I do not believe one can find a more accessible commentary on the Confessions as what Cooper has presented here. His translations and explanations are some of the best out there, and this book can be read by the general Christian population. If you are looking for a beginner's guide to Augustine's though, START HERE because you will not be disappointed.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
4 of 6 people found the following review helpful By FrKurt Messick HALL OF FAMETOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on November 1, 2003
Format: Paperback
Stephen Cooper, associate professor of religious studies at Franklin and Marshall College in Pennsylvania, has produced a very readable and practical guide to Augustine in this text, 'Augustine for the Armchair Theologians'. At first glance, one might think that the text is not a serious text (not always a bad thing to assume, mind you), as there are line-art drawing of a cartoon-ish nature throughout, but this is no book for dummies (although it is very accessible). Cooper does not dishonour the text of Augustine's 'Confessions', instead following very closely the autobiographical portion of the 'Confessions', deviating only to bring in outside material (from Augustine or from other sources) to further enlighten the reader.
Augustine remains a pivotal figure, both in church history, and history of the world generally. A man of great passion and great intellect, he combined these in fascinating ways, producing what many call the first real autobiography (in his 'Confessions') and putting together a mammoth collection of practical and philosophical theological writings, such that the scholar Isidore of Seville wrote that 'he who claims to have mastered all of Augustine is a liar'.
Augustine lived at the time of the fall of Rome and the initial breakdown of Roman society, a time when the primary surviving institution was the church, and the world longed for stability of 'the good old days'. Augustine himself was a man of great passion who had in his youth no problem of acting out of that passion; he had deep, powerful relationships and a keen intellect and personality that attracted people to him.
Read more ›
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again

What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?