Página InicialGruposDiscussãoMaisZeitgeist
Pesquisar O Sítio Web
Este sítio web usa «cookies» para fornecer os seus serviços, para melhorar o desempenho, para analítica e (se não estiver autenticado) para publicidade. Ao usar o LibraryThing está a reconhecer que leu e compreende os nossos Termos de Serviço e Política de Privacidade. A sua utilização deste sítio e serviços está sujeita a essas políticas e termos.
Hide this

Resultados dos Livros Google

Carregue numa fotografia para ir para os Livros Google.

A carregar...

Augustine: Conversions to Confessions

por Robin Lane-Fox

MembrosCríticasPopularidadeAvaliação médiaMenções
1692125,868 (4.13)1
"You are great, O Lord, and greatly to be praised; great is your power and to your wisdom there no limit." So begin the Confessions of St. Augustine: the most intimate and heartfelt prayer ever composed, a cornerstone of Western thought, and a study of anguish, hesitation, and divine intervention that influences Christians--Catholics and Protestants alike--to this day. But the Confessions do not tell the full story of Augustine's tumultuous life and times. Here, the celebrated historian of the ancient world, Robin Lane Fox, follows Augustine of Hippo on his eventful journey to God and the writing of the Confessions. Born in AD 354 to a pagan father and a Christian mother, Augustine spent the first years of his life grappling with the nature of God and the world. He learned about Christianity as a child but was not baptized, choosing instead to immerse himself in his studies--all the while indulging in a life of lust and ambition. In the Confessions, he recounts his schooling in the classics in late-Roman North Africa, his sexual. sins ("Give me chastity, but not yet," he famously prayed), his time in an outlawed heretical sect, his worldly career and friendships; and his' gradual return to God. Drawing on recently discovered letters and sermons, Lane Fox expands on and complicates the story Augustine told about himself. He takes us from Augustine's heretical years as a Manichaean and his study of Neoplatonism to his later conversion. He evokes Augustine's early life with exceptional insight, showing how his quest for knowledge and faith ultimately brought him to Christianity. And he calls on his unparalleled knowledge of antiquity to bring Augustine's world to bustling life. This is an authoritative portrait of this colossal figure at his most thoughtful, venerable, and profound."--Adapted from book jacket.… (mais)
Nenhum(a)
A carregar...

Adira ao LibraryThing para descobrir se irá gostar deste livro.

Ainda não há conversas na Discussão sobre este livro.

» Ver também 1 menção

Mostrando 2 de 2
I was rather misled on this one: it's not so much a biography as a close reading of the Confessions, combined with some very nicely done, extremely fine-grained history. It isn't, though, all that much fun; the narrative bogs down in the detail; the comparisons between Augie and two other late-ancients don't really add all that much to the story; it's far too long; Fox has a dubious handle on theology.

On the upside, if you're a scholar or just really into detail, you will love the hell out of this book. It's easier to read than most academic work, but very careful and well-referenced. If you're studying Augustine, definitely read it. If you're just interested, you probably only need Brown's biography.

But it did make me want to (re-)read Augie's works, which is surely the ultimate purpose of books like this. So, well done. ( )
1 vote stillatim | Oct 23, 2020 |
An excellent supplement to Peter Brown's “Augustine of Hippo,” focusing more narrowly than Brown's book on the period of Augustine's “conversions,” from approximately 372, when he “became fired with the love of 'wisdom' on encountering Cicero's Hortensius to his final conversion (according to Fox) to celibacy and renunciation of earthly ambition in 386 in the garden in Milan. (Fox clarifies his use of the word “conversion” as follows...
“a conversion requires a decisive change whereby we abandon a previous practice or belief and adopt exclusively a new one. It involves a 'turning which implies a consciousness that the old way was wrong and the new is right'.... I do not restrict conversions to changes from one religion to another. Conversions are possible within one and the same religious commitment, as historians of early and medieval Christianity recognize.”

Actually, Augustine's final conversion only takes us up to page 294, with the remaining 268 pages concerned with his conversions of others, and the experiences and developments in his thought that led the writing of his Confessions. In addition to Augustine and Christianity and its competition in the Roman world, Fox broadens the picture by looking at the lives of two other men, comparable to Augustine in education and experience, who help place Augustine's words and actions in the context of his world.
“Modern readers find it hard to remember that much of it [the vividness with which Augustine lays his past before God] may have been less startling in the context of its time. I will therefore present it against two near-contemporaries' lives. My aim is not to write a biography of all three persons, but to place Augustine, with the Confessions in his hand, as the central panel in a triple set of sketches, like a triptych on a medieval Christian altar. On the left side stands a sketch of his older contemporary Libanius, casting a look of profound disapproval up at Augustine, not least because he himself was a pagan and a committed Greek teacher, one who detested Latin and the technical skill of shorthand. On the right side, looking up with tempered adoration, is a sketch of his younger Greek-speaking contemporary Synesius, a Christian, a bishop and a fellow lover of philosophy.

The lives of Libanius and Synesius do not overlap with all of Augustine's early career, but they help to bring out aspects of it, his social class and the demands which it imposed on him, the pressures of his schooling and his worldly ambitions, his relations with close family members and the ideals of friendship which he projected onto those around him. Like Augustine, Libanius and Synesius wrote about ascents to a divine presence. More mundanely, they illustrate the social perils of travel abroad to great cities, followed by a return, like Augustine's, to a home town. They address their own and others' sexual lives in ways which contrast with Augustine's. They also illumine the bitterness which appointments to prominent jobs could ignite, especially, as ever, in a Christian church.”
Fox does not spend a huge amount of time with these two, bringing them in periodically to cast light on Augustine's experiences and choices, but I found their presence helpful.

Fox's non-Christian perspective adds a useful objectivity to this narrative. He doesn't feel obliged to point out where Augustine is headed in the right direction and where he's not, and his expertise on pagan religion and Manichaeism adds tremendously to his presentation of how Augustine's thought differed from and built on other ideas current in his time. Also, if you've ever wondered exactly how Manichaeism differed from catholic Christianity, look no further! Fox explores this in great, great detail. Speaking of detail, this is probably the place for me to mention that this is a very detail-oriented book. Shadings of belief, minutiae of theological quarrels, in-depth consideration of Manichaean practices, etc. did occasionally become a bit much for me, but, in fairness to Fox, I “read” this with my ears (thanks to my friend Nicole for this expression!) while walking a lively young golden retriever, so readers who are better focused might well not have this issue. Anyway, given the length of the book and the ideas under discussion, Fox really does an excellent job. His explanation of the development of Augustine's ideas on free will, grace, and predestination is notably clear, and, while recognizing how disconcerting and unattractive some of Augustine's views on celibacy and perfectionism will be to modern readers, Fox nevertheless manages to render him, on the whole, an admirable and appealing figure.

I'll conclude with Fox's transition, in Chapter 21, from focusing on Augustine's conversions to examining his confessions, as this encapsulates his themes far better than my words could.
”So far, we have followed Augustine's memories with a constant eye on his conversions. There have been three, to philosophy, to celibacy and within Christianity to the supposedly 'true Christianity' preached by Mani. Conversion has been the obvious theme to pursue in his early life because he himself looks back on it in terms of a turning from and towards God. It is also the theme which makes him special for modern historians. He is the only early Christian who has told us in detail about his conversions. They are not conversions to Christianity from non-Christian belief. They have emerged as conversions away from rhetoric, worldly ambition, and sex.
After his decision in the garden many modern scholars continue to look for yet more conversions and make them a guiding theme in their accounts of the following years. Augustine continued to try to convert others, but in my view he underwent no more conversions himself. However, he is also special for being the author of a masterpiece, the Confessions. Confessing, therefore, is the thread which I will trace in the next eleven years until this masterpiece's beginning. Gradually, he will assemble in his mind the pieces which enable him to confess in a novel way. If he had confessed his sins to God after coming indoors from the garden, his prayer would have sounded very different. Eleven years later, he had written on deep questions of free will and grace, sin, faith and predestination, questions which were to become central parts of his legacy to Christian thinking. They are also the themes with which Luther, Calvin, and many others would engage through knowledge of his writings and which would earn him his status as a Doctor of the Catholic Church. They are a far cry from his days as Milan's Libanius, 'selling lies for a living.'”

Four and a half stars, recommended for readers with a real interest in early Christianity, and especially those who have already read Peter Brown's book on Augustine and want to dig a bit deeper. ( )
1 vote meandmybooks | Mar 3, 2017 |
Mostrando 2 de 2
sem críticas | adicionar uma crítica
Tem de autenticar-se para poder editar dados do Conhecimento Comum.
Para mais ajuda veja a página de ajuda do Conhecimento Comum.
Título canónico
Título original
Títulos alternativos
Data da publicação original
Pessoas/Personagens
Locais importantes
Acontecimentos importantes
Filmes relacionados
Prémios e menções honrosas
Informação do Conhecimento Comum em inglês. Edite para a localizar na sua língua.
Epígrafe
Dedicatória
Primeiras palavras
Citações
Últimas palavras
Nota de desambiguação
Editores da Editora
Autores de citações elogiosas (normalmente na contracapa do livro)
Língua original
DDC/MDS canónico

Referências a esta obra em recursos externos.

Wikipédia em inglês

Nenhum(a)

"You are great, O Lord, and greatly to be praised; great is your power and to your wisdom there no limit." So begin the Confessions of St. Augustine: the most intimate and heartfelt prayer ever composed, a cornerstone of Western thought, and a study of anguish, hesitation, and divine intervention that influences Christians--Catholics and Protestants alike--to this day. But the Confessions do not tell the full story of Augustine's tumultuous life and times. Here, the celebrated historian of the ancient world, Robin Lane Fox, follows Augustine of Hippo on his eventful journey to God and the writing of the Confessions. Born in AD 354 to a pagan father and a Christian mother, Augustine spent the first years of his life grappling with the nature of God and the world. He learned about Christianity as a child but was not baptized, choosing instead to immerse himself in his studies--all the while indulging in a life of lust and ambition. In the Confessions, he recounts his schooling in the classics in late-Roman North Africa, his sexual. sins ("Give me chastity, but not yet," he famously prayed), his time in an outlawed heretical sect, his worldly career and friendships; and his' gradual return to God. Drawing on recently discovered letters and sermons, Lane Fox expands on and complicates the story Augustine told about himself. He takes us from Augustine's heretical years as a Manichaean and his study of Neoplatonism to his later conversion. He evokes Augustine's early life with exceptional insight, showing how his quest for knowledge and faith ultimately brought him to Christianity. And he calls on his unparalleled knowledge of antiquity to bring Augustine's world to bustling life. This is an authoritative portrait of this colossal figure at his most thoughtful, venerable, and profound."--Adapted from book jacket.

Não foram encontradas descrições de bibliotecas.

Descrição do livro
Resumo Haiku

Ligações Rápidas

Capas populares

Avaliação

Média: (4.13)
0.5
1
1.5
2
2.5 1
3 1
3.5 1
4
4.5 2
5 3

É você?

Torne-se num Autor LibraryThing.

 

Acerca | Contacto | LibraryThing.com | Privacidade/Termos | Ajuda/Perguntas Frequentes | Blogue | Loja | APIs | TinyCat | Bibliotecas Legadas | Primeiros Críticos | Conhecimento Comum | 160,715,608 livros! | Barra de topo: Sempre visível