Tuesday, 18 December 2007

Some vintage Hauerwas

Let’s face it: there’s no one quite like Stanley Hauerwas. In a discussion of Milbank’s view of the relation between theology and the university, Hauerwas remarks:

“I confess I am tempted to side with Milbank if for no other reason than that his position is so offensive. Moreover, that such a position does not have a ‘snowball’s chance in hell’ of being realized in the university as we know it makes it all the more attractive” (The State of the University [Oxford: Blackwell, 2007], p. 23).

3 Comments:

John C. Poirier said...

Ben,

Do you find Hauerwas's reasoning in this quotation creditable?

You're right: it is classic Hauerwas. When I was at Duke, he once began a class by putting out a very controversial view. After no one responded to what he said, he confessed that he wasn't sure he believed it, and that he sometimes says things just for the shock value. I was therefore not that surprised when I read, in *With the Grain of the Universe*, that he would "rather be wrong than boring" (!).

Personally, I find those traits deplorable in a theologian.

Don't you?

Freder1ck said...

what's deplorable is that nobody spoke up and contradicted him... alas.

John C. Poirier said...

Ben,

Do you find Hauerwas's reasoning in this quotation creditable?

You're right: it is classic Hauerwas. When I was at Duke, he once began a class by putting out a very controversial view. After no one responded to what he said, he confessed that he wasn't sure he believed it, and that he sometimes says things just for the shock value. I was therefore not that surprised when I read, in *With the Grain of the Universe*, that he would "rather be wrong than boring" (!).

Personally, I find those traits deplorable in a theologian.

Don't you?

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