Paul Ricoeur between Theology and Philosophy

Paul Ricoeur between Theology and Philosophy

Detour and Return
Boyd Blundell
Distribution: World
Publication date: 05/25/2010
Format: Paperback
ISBN: 978-0-253-22190-2
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Paul Ricoeur (1913–2005) remains one of philosophy of religion's most distinctive voices. Ricoeur was a philosopher first, and while his religious reflections are very relevant to theology, Boyd Blundell argues that his philosophy is even more relevant. Using Ricoeur's own philosophical hermeneutics, Blundell shows that there is a way for explicitly Christian theology to maintain both its integrity and overall relevance. He demonstrates how the dominant pattern of detour and return found throughout Ricoeur’s work provides a path to understanding the relationship between philosophy and theology. By putting Ricoeur in dialogue with current, fundamental, and longstanding debates about the role of philosophy in theology, Blundell offers a hermeneutically sensitive engagement with Ricoeur's thought from a theological perspective.

Author Bio

Boyd Blundell is Assistant Professor of Ethics in the Department of Religious Studies at Loyola University New Orleans.


“Boyd Blundell calls readers to create a narrative unity of life amidst the incommensurabilities of everyday existence. With deft skill, he integrates biblical criticism, philosophical commentary, and theological insight, showing how the construction of narrative identity is elucidated by Ricoeur's philosophy of the intersubjective self. Innovative, invigorating, beautifully written, carefully researched, and highly recommended.”
 — Mark Wallace, Swarthmore College

“The terms of engagement of theology and philosophy in the contemporary academy are of considerable interest, along with the figure of Ricoeur and the subject of hermeneutics generally. . . . Highly engaging, well-structured, lucid.”
 — Jim Fodor, St. Bonaventure University

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Table of Contents

Preface and Acknowledgments
Part 1. The Main Road
1. Fundamental Loyalties
2. Theology, Hermeneutics, and Ricoeur's Double Life
Part 2. Detour
3. Prefiguration: The Critical Arc and Descriptive Identity
4. Configuration: The Narrative Arc and Narrative Identity
5. Refiguration: Ricoeur's "Little Ethics"
Part 3. Return
6. Chalcedonian Hermeneutics
7. Theological Anthropology: Removing Brackets
Works Cited

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