Friday 21 December 2007

Zeitschrift für dialektische Theologie

The latest issue of the European Barth-studies journal, Zeitschrift für dialektische Theologie, includes my article on Barth’s historiography: “Karl Barth as Historian: Historical Method in the Göttingen Lectures on Calvin, Zwingli and Schleiermacher,” ZDTh 23:1 (2007), 96-109. (If you’d like a copy, just send me an email.) It also features articles by Ernstpeter Maurer, Dietrich Ritschl, Rinse Reeling Brouwer, Ulrike Link Wieczorek, Dick Boer and Karl-Friedrich Wiggermann; as well as reviews by Matthias Freudenberg, Christophe Chalamet and others.

The most interesting part looks like the exchange between Ernstpeter Maurer and Dietrich Ritschl on the question of “narrative theology.” While Maurer’s article (“Narrative Strukturen im theologischen Denken Karl Barths”) presents a narrative interpretation of the structure of Barth’s thought, Ritschl critiques this approach in an article with the polemical title: “Theologie ist explikativ und argumentativ, nicht narrativ.”

I might post something more on this exchange later (perhaps in connection with this book, which I finally hope to review shortly). For now, here’s a pointed remark from Dietrich Ritschl (p. 23): “My thesis is as follows: ‘narrative theology’ is a misnomer, a false concept, because theology – from first to last – is reflecting, testing, interpreting, arguing, analysing and constructing, even if all this leads to doxology, to prayer and preaching.”


k said...

But theology tests, interprets, argues about, and analyzes what? Isn't the answer to this question God's acts in time? I, like Ritschl, am not satisfied with the slippery, trendy label "narrative" for theology, but the fact that we Christians read a history - divine and human - as the foundation of our faith gives me pause about claiming an absolutely realist position (though I can't claim that such is Murphy's position). I look forward to your review of Murphy's book.

Unknown said...

Hello Ben, I was wandering if I might be able to get a copy but I don't know the email address.

Ben Myers said...

Hi Shea: just click the "email me" link at the top of the sidebar on the right.

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