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The Future of Religion Paperback – May 25, 2007


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The Future of Religion + Naturalism (Interventions) + Breaking the Spell: Religion as a Natural Phenomenon
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Columbia University Press (May 25, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0231134959
  • ISBN-13: 978-0231134958
  • Product Dimensions: 8 x 5.3 x 0.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 5.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #910,381 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

Recommended for large academic Libraries

(Library Journal)

We're lucky then, to have The Future of Religion...unlike so many voices we've heard in the last week, Rorty and Vattimo think big about Catholicism.

(Carlin Romano Philadelphia Inquirer)

The Future of Religion is the perfect primer in post-metaphysical historicism.

(Paul J. Griffiths First Things)

This brief book opens a vista onto the thought of two... helpful thinkers.

(Jeffrey Dudiak Philosophy in Review)

Intellectually stimulating.

(James J. DiCenso Journal of the American Academy of Religion)

Review

What comes after the 'end of metaphysics'? Can religion survive without foundations, objective truth, or God? Two of the world's leading philosophers-Gianni Vattimo and Richard Rorty-converge on an answer here. Together, Vattimo's hermeneutics and Rorty's pragmatism reframe our vision of the Christian message that love is the only law. Concise and cutting-edge, this book makes for exciting reading. Santiago Zabala has done a real service in forging a dialogue and making these reflections available.

(Nancy Frankenberry, Dartmouth College)

Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

54 of 57 people found the following review helpful By Dr. D. E. McClean on March 30, 2005
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Richard Rorty and Gianni Vattimo have given us a work that may be described as an important part of an answer to two important questions that modernity has not yet engaged constructively. First, How may modernity come to terms with the religious impulse that is still alive and well in the modern world even after over a century of the hegemony of science and rationalism? Second, How may those who do not hear the music of religion begin to understand those who do, rather than throw stones at them across a dualistic divide (and vice versa)? Richard Rorty, ever evolving in his philosophical thought, exposes himself as once caught in a dualism concerning religious faith. In this book, he laments that he has in the past branded himself an "atheist" and observed the need for a more nuanced description of his thinking concerning religion and religious belief. The "atheist" label, once self-applied, is now rejected. It is rejected not because he has "come to Jesus" or "has seen the Light" but because it plays into a zero-sum, dualistic game that Rorty knows he can do without. ("Atheist," which is both an epistemologically and metaphysically charged word, is replaced with "anti-clerical" because of its political use.) To use his own language from other of his writings, "atheist" is a kind of "conversation stopper" in the sense that it truncates active and fruitful discourse with those of his fellows who brand themselves "theists." This indicates evolution in Rorty's thought, but it is perfectly in line with his antifoundationalism and his governing ethical value - his so-called "liberal ironism.Read more ›
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18 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Jon Fobes on February 16, 2005
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Not long ago an Amish teen from Chardon, Ohio, was killed when he tried to dislodge a sagging power line tangled in the wheels of his horse-drawn buggy. Such tragedies highlight the gaps between a faith-based existence and life in the modern world and reveal that we need to be mindful of how the other half lives. Philosophers Richard Rorty and Gianni Vattimo believe that the secular and faith-based worlds are becoming irrevocably estranged. This is what I take from my reading of "The Future of Religion," edited and with an introduction by Santiago Zabala. I think this slim volume of two essays and a question-and-answer section will be open to a wide variety of readings; this reaction is only one interpretation.

Rorty and Vattimo believe a drastic split is imminent between modern, secular life and traditional belief in mainstream religion. And they want to build a bridge between these worlds, to save something important to many people: belief in something larger than themselves. The only problem is that the religious life they suggest -- an interior life of private meaning or the "nihilism" of Christianity -- is probably either incomprehensible or offensive to most ordinary churchgoers. But you decide. I'm already on board.

One way to grasp "The Future of Religion" is through a quote from philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche: "There are no facts, only interpretations." But the authors want Nietzsche to add this phrase: "... and this is an interpretation.
Read more ›
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful By barryb on May 18, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
FIRST ADD TOGETHER:

1. A superb publisher of post-modern work like Columbia university press.
2. Zabala's real gift for clarity and comprehensive understanding of the context of post-modern thinking.
3. Vattimo's true creativity in presenting the hermeneutics of "weak thought"
4. An finally, Rorty , who has generally been ignored and deserved some exposure.

AND WHAT DO YOU GET: A FAILURE (what?)

The three great thinkers here present us with a triad of the post-modern context:

1. RORTY 2. VATTIMO
3. ZABALA

the problems that exist with this project are as follows:

1. Rorty deserved more space and needed it to produce more content. (I had to go on-line and supplement the Rorty essay because of this "lack".

2. Zabala needed to introduce the writers in a more structured manner and especially so that Rorty's invisibility could become visible.

3. The expected guidelines sent to each writer, in advance for the project, should have been more demanding with regard to content. At least an outline of : deconstruction, re-construction, positing , and finally mediation. Columbia press already knows this (they are post-modern experts). But these guidelines and expectations were missing.

4. The concluding summation by Zabala is overly- slanted towards Vattimo (I get it. He is a co-writer with Vattimo on other projects).

If you are in the process of submitting a proposal for your master's thesis (not PhD); this outline would be excellent to undertake and write correctly, with real substantial content.

the project is superb; the result was horrible. But Zabala has other great work. 2 generous stars. Skip this half-book.
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