The Insistence of God

The Insistence of God

A Theology of Perhaps
John D. Caputo
Distribution: Global
Publication date: 09/13/2013
Format: Paperback
ISBN: 978-0-253-01007-0
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The Insistence of God presents the provocative idea that God does not exist, God insists, while God’s existence is a human responsibility, which may or may not happen. For John D. Caputo, God’s existence is haunted by "perhaps," which does not signify indecisiveness but an openness to risk, to the unforeseeable. Perhaps constitutes a theology of what is to come and what we cannot see coming. Responding to current critics of continental philosophy, Caputo explores the materiality of perhaps and the promise of the world. He shows how perhaps can become a new theology of the gaps God opens.

Author Bio

John D. Caputo is Thomas J. Watson Professor of Religion Emeritus at Syracuse University and the David R. Cook Professor of Philosophy Emeritus at Villanova University. He is author of The Weakness of God (IUP, 2006), which won the American Academy of Religion's Award for Excellence in the Study of Religion in the Constructive-Reflective Studies category.


“John Caputo has done it again with his latest work of radical theology. He has put the cat among the theological pigeons and flustered the philosophical dovecotes in no uncertain terms—a real tour de force or perhaps a tour de faiblesse, choc-a-bloc with unorthodoxy but with a very serious point. It is difficult to know which to admire more his great erudition or his remarkable courage.”
 — Patrick Masterson, University College, Dublin

“John D. Caputo is at the top of his game, and he is not content to reiterate what he has already expressed, but continues to develop his own ideas further by way of a thorough engagement with the fields of theology, Continental philosophy, and religious thought.”
 — Clayton Crockett, University of Central Arkansas

“Challenging, combative, witty, and incisive, this is Caputo at his best. The Insistence of God is a cry in the postmodern desert for a fuller life to come, not elsewhere, but here among the least of these. It makes bold the mission of radical theology to haunt and disrupt the slumber of confessional theology. It awakens troubling thoughts and solicits deep responses. This is a work of audacity and insight, but above all—though the word is discreetly traced—of love.”
 — Richard Kearney, Boston College

“For those allergic to theological certainty—whether of God’s existence or of God’s death—Caputo delivers storm-fresh relief: the theopoetics of God’s insistence.”
 — Catherine Keller, Drew University

“In my life I have read no more stimulating book of theology. Buckle your seatbelt!”
 — Dialog

“Caputo's Insistence of God is an excellent text that opens the way into new forms of theological thinking. He puts forward an argument that must be wrestled with and brings to light new avenues for both religious and theological thought. Caputo is not for the faint of heart as his style is, at times, trenchant; but, in the end, wrestling with his work makes one better on the other side.”
 — Reviews in Religion and Theology

“The Insistence of God is a tour de force of novel, provocative ideas expressed in Heideggerian, Derridean, and Deleuzian rhetoric. It reads like a manifesto for a new wave of Christian theologians who re-imagine theology under the name of theopoetics.”
 — Bibliographia

“[T]his is a valuable theological contribution for those with ears to hear. . . . Recommended. ”
 — Choice

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Table of Contents

Preface: The Gap God Opens
Part 1. The Insistence of God
1. God, Perhaps: The Fear of One Small Word
2. The Insistence of God
3. Insistence and Hospitality: Mary and Martha in a Postmodern World
Part 2. Theopoetics: The Insistence of Theology
4. Theopoetics as the Insistence of a Radical Theology
5. Two Types of Continental Philosophy of Religion
6. Is There an Event in Hegel? Malabou, Plasticity, and "Perhaps"
7. Gigantomachean Ethics: Žižek, Milbank, and the Fear of One Small Word
Part 3. Cosmopoetics: The Insistence of the World
8. The Insistence of the World: From Chiasm to Cosmos
9. As if I Were Dead: Radical Theology and the Real
10. Facts, Fictions, and Faith: What Is Really Real after All?
11. A Nihilism of Grace: Life, Death, and Resurrection
12. The Grace of the World

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