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Greece's Dostoevsky: The Theological Vision of Alexandros Papadiamandis Paperback


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 238 pages
  • Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (August 29, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1463770235
  • ISBN-13: 978-1463770235
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 6 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #198,215 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Anestis Keselopoulos is Professor of Christian Ethics and Pastoral Theology at the Theological School of Aristotle University of Thessalonica.

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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Anthony P Spanakos on October 14, 2011
Format: Paperback
Herman Middleton's translation of Anestis Kesolopoulos' "Greece's Dostoevsky: The Theological Vision of Alexandros Papadiamantis" (Protecting Veil Press, 2011)offers excellent literary analysis of Greece's best (but largely unknown) novelist as well as invaluable catechical material. Papadiamantis was largely rejected by many Greek scholarly generations until his importance as a novelist was identified by Seferis and Sikelianos. His contribution to debates about Orthodox ecclesiology and Greek identity was affirmed by Lorenzatos and Yannaras. In the past two decades, some of his short stories and his novella The Murderess have appeared in English translation.
This book identifies Papadiamantis as a novelist whose work and vision is thoroughly liturgical. Like Dostoevski, religious themes are ubiquitous in Papadiamantis's stories. Similarly, he laments Westernization, as well as hypocritical clerics. Kesolopoulos explores the influence of the Kollybades movement and monasticism on Papadiamantis's writings, particularly highlighting the roles played by the clergy and laity in Papadiamantis's stories.
In examining these themes, the book is a wonderful catechical introduction to Orthodoxy, its Typikon (service book), theology, and ecclesiology. Herman Middleton provides helpful footnotes throughout the text to explain terms that are foreign to non-Greek and non-Orthodox readers, and his introduction to the book does an excellent job explaining 'why this book now?' The recent revival of traditional books on monasticism and Orthodoxy has not given enough attention to the ways that Christian art can enter into the popular imaginary.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By pavlova on September 29, 2011
Format: Paperback
Greece's Dostoevsky revisits the question of the relationship between art and spiritual life. This book reveals that Orthodoxy affirms the artistic impulse....I loved how immediately we are introduced to Solomon's temple in 1 Kings 6 which gives a clear example of the propriety of using the costliest materials and the most beautiful art to glorify God. We are shown how Christ himself used allergory in His use of parables like in turn the ancient church fathers in their interpretation of the scripture. Many Fathers used poetry finding normal language inadequate for describing their spiritual experience. The sublime Orthodox liturgy and music and icons and the power of art both liturgical and non-liturgical can change hearts and inspire faith in so many! Read this exquisitely beautiful book if you have forgotten the power of the Orthodox ethos in this rapidly changing fast moving modern world...or just read the book if you want to remember specific examples how to feel experientially closer to our Lord God! This book is a great blessing for all!! PS. The translation is excellent also! I highly recommend!!! Nashville, Tn
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By isaac on November 27, 2011
Format: Paperback
Having recently finished reading Protecting Veil's translation and publication of Keselopoulos's Greece's Dostoevsky, two words come to mind: praise and gratitude.

Praise: for the meticulous yet beautiful and easy-to-read translation; for the careful attention given to every detail in the book's publication; for the many images that gracefully enrich the reading experience; and praise for the overall "approachability" of the text that clearly communicates the many valuable take-home lessons found throughout.

Gratitude: for the inclusion of the marvelously written foreword of paramount insight by Athonite Priest-monk Alexis (see third quote below, from page 22 of the book); for the text helping remedy personal Orthodox "convert confusion," and gratitude for the text having cultivated a love and fondness for the life and work of Alexandros Papadiamandis.

With numerous corners folded and endless lines highlighted, perhaps it's helpful to share a few lines from sections I found particularly helpful:
"...many Christians of that era preferred going to church in small chapels rather than in the large and luxurious churches." p.170
"While Papadiamindis insists that the Church must remain far from politics, he does not believe that it should remain far from the world." p.91
"Papadiamandis's characters demonstrate that the beginning of humility is honesty with themselves, by admitting that they are sinners 'and the chief of them,' and honesty with God. Their refreshing simplicity and forthrightness springs from their unified life in the Church..." p.22

Know that this book is *not just for folks already familiar and interested with Papadiamandis.* It matters little either way. The lessons transcend their immediate literary and historical subject.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By anyuta on November 14, 2011
Format: Paperback
Both thought-provoking and soul-profiting, Greece's Dostoevsky opens a window into the world of late 1800s Greece. Keselopoulos employs a distinctly theological approach to Papadiamandis's writings, highlighting the lived Orthodox experience in a way that is particularly enlightening to Christians living in the West today. Rather than focusing on an intellectual understanding of theology, Keselopoulos stays firmly rooted in Orthodox Christian tradition, placing importance on the faith of the complete human being, both the spiritual and the physical.

The inclusion of two of Papadiamandis's short stories and an excellent glossary complete this masterfully-translated volume.
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