Tuesday 19 July 2005

The best books ever written on Karl Barth

The books about Karl Barth could fill an entire library. And on the whole the quality of all this scholarship is extraordinary. Many of the twentieth century’s leading theologians started out by writing brilliant books or dissertations on Barth’s theology. So it’s particularly difficult to choose the very best books. Still, here is my own list (in chronological order) of the Top Eight—if I had to save just eight from my library, these would be the ones:

Hans Urs von Balthasar, The Theology of Karl Barth: Exposition and Interpretation (San Francisco: Ignatius Press, 1992 [1951])

G. C. Berkouwer, The Triumph of Grace in the Theology of Karl Barth (London: Paternoster, 1956 [1954])

Hans Küng, Justification: The Doctrine of Karl Barth and a Catholic Reflection (London: Burns & Oates, 1964 [1957])

Robert W. Jenson, Alpha and Omega: A Study in the Theology of Karl Barth (New York: Thomas Nelson, 1963)

Eberhard Jüngel, God’s Being Is in Becoming: The Trinitarian Being of God in the Theology of Karl Barth: A Paraphrase (Edinburgh: T&T Clark, 2001 [1965])

Eberhard Busch, Karl Barth: His Life from Letters and Autobiographical Texts (London: SCM Press, 1976 [1975])

George Hunsinger, How to Read Karl Barth: The Shape of His Theology (New York: Oxford University Press, 1991)

Bruce L. McCormack, Karl Barth's Critically Realistic Dialectical Theology: Its Genesis and Development, 1909-1936 (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1995)

1 Comment:

Seth Lester said...

What would you consider the best scholarly biography of Barth?

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