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Faith, Hope and Poetry (Ashgate Studies in Theology, Imagination and the Arts) Hardcover – September 1, 2010


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Product Details

  • Series: Ashgate Studies in Theology, Imagination and the Arts
  • Hardcover: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Ashgate (September 1, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0754669068
  • ISBN-13: 978-0754669067
  • Product Dimensions: 1 x 6.2 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,969,520 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Malcolm Guite is poet, priest and academic living and working in Cambridge, His recent writings include 'What Do Christians Believe? 2006, "Poetry, Playfulness and Truth...'" a chapter on the theology of A Midsummer Night's Dream and The Tempest in Faithful Performances; Enacting Christian Tradition, ed. Trevor Hart and Stephen Guthrie Ashgate 2007 and six poems in Live Simply, 2008. His chapter on the poetry of CS Lewis appears in the Cambridge Companion to CS Lewis, 2009.

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Customer Reviews

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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Signpoststeve on February 16, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The first time I read this book was like the first time hearing a great album of music. So many delights... so many unexpected turns... so many great pay-offs.

The second time, I found myself looking forward to certain sections, being dazzled by ones I missed the first time, and settling into the lovely, ambient air of Malcolm's poetic prose - itself a testament to the dictum, the medium is the message.

The third time was more absorbing than the first two. Now familiar, sitting longer with certain passages, and giving myself to the work rather than mining it for bankable insights.

Recently, I've taken to selecting chapters and passages in the same way I might select favorite songs according to mood and occasion, reading for sheer pleasure.

Handily challenging the dry, analytic, reductive and atomizing bluster of the Enlightenment's inordinate reason, Malcolm explores the "power of poetry to renew vision by transfiguring the ordinary, to reveal in 'utter visibility' that things are 'alive with what's invisible.'"

With a reverent mastery of material I've not encountered elsewhere, Malcolm first draws on the archaic Dream of the Rood through Shakespeare to the poetry of Sir John Davies, John Donne, George Herbert, Henry Vaughan, Milton, Coleridge, and on through Thomas Hardy, Philip Larkin, and Geoffrey Hill to the replenishing fountain that is the poetry of Seamus Heaney. Throughout, his purpose is to "vindicate the imagination and to rekindle our sense of the marvelous."

Like another reviewer has already said, I give this 5 stars because there isn't an option for 10.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Charles Twombly on December 13, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I have worked through this amazing book, chapter by chapter, and have found stunning insights on virtually every page. Guite, both a theologian, literary scholar, and poet of great skill, takes us on a tour from the Middle Ages and the Dream of the Rood all the way to our contemporary, Seamus Heaney, with probing chapters on Shakespeare, Coleridge, and several others along the way.

The hypothetical general reader interested in ways faith and art can connect and mutually illuminate each other will find this a rich source. Both theologians and literary scholars could build courses around it; it's perfect for "theology and literature" or "religion and literature" courses. Guite has an amazing grasp of classical theology, the (British) literary tradition, and contemporary culture (the last named being the unspoken backdrop for the other two). Those familiar with him may know him as a college chaplain at Cambridge, the leader of a rock group, a dynamic speaker on the Inklings and poets like Blake and Coleridge, and a fan of American motorcyles. Few bring such varied resources/talents to the table. They vivify the contents of this remarkable book.
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