Stanley Cavell, Religion, and Continental Philosophy

Stanley Cavell, Religion, and Continental Philosophy

Espen Dahl
Distribution: World
Publication date: 05/05/2014
Format: Hardback
ISBN: 978-0-253-01202-9
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The American philosopher Stanley Cavell (b. 1926) is a secular Jew who by his own admission is obsessed with Christ, yet his outlook on religion in general is ambiguous. Probing the secular and the sacred in Cavell’s thought, Espen Dahl explains that Cavell, while often parting ways with Christianity, cannot dismiss it either. Focusing on Cavell's work as a whole, but especially on his recent engagement with Continental philosophy, Dahl brings out important themes in Cavell’s philosophy and his conversation with theology.

Author Bio

Espen Dahl is Associate Professor of Systematic Theology at the UiT The Arctic University of Norway. He is author of Phenomenology and the Holy: Religious Experience after Husserl and In Between: The Holy Beyond Modern Dichotomies.


“In making such a convincing case for claiming that religion is Stanley Cavell’s pervasive, hence invisible, business, Espen Dahl also puts Cavell’s writings into sustained and productive dialogue with the work of Levinas and Girard in ways other commentators have not previously managed.”
 — Stephen Mulhall, Oxford University

“First-rate and never so technically exposed as to impede readers new to Cavell, or to his reluctance to theology or continental philosophy. I can't imagine a better introduction to the interweaving themes and topics.”
 — Edward Mooney, Syracuse University

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Table of Contents

List of Abbreviations
1. Modernism and Religion
2. The Ordinary Sublime
3. Acknowledging God
4. Skepticism, Finitude, and Sin
5. The Tragic Dimension of the Ordinary
6. The Other and Violence
7. Forgiveness and Passivity
Conclusion: The Last Question: Self-redemption or Divine Redemption?

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