Tuesday 25 March 2008

Hart on Williams

In the latest TLS, David Bentley Hart reviews Rowan Williams’ brilliant collection of essays, Wrestling with Angels. The best part of the review is the word “pogonotrophy” – Hart has been waiting his whole life for the chance to use that word in a sentence, and he does so here to great effect.


Brandon Jones said...

Thanks for drawing our attention to this. I would've never known about this review otherwise. I also appreciate being enlightened on the proper use of pogonotomy and pogonotrophy. I'll be sure to correct anyone who mixes them up.

Anonymous said...

Talk about $10 words (Hemingway on Faulkner) - make that a Ben Franklin! I'll bet Hart keeps the entire 20 volumes of the OED in his loo for casual reading.

Anonymous said...

Hart's a pretentious bastard and an academic slut, but damn you gotta love him!

Anonymous said...

Hart's airy dismissal of Cupitt is wonderful too.

Anonymous said...

Isn't it just!

There is a true story - but I won't mention names - about a meeting at which the theological faculty at Cambridge were being introduced to new divinity students. When the chair got to Cupitt, he said, "And this is Don Cupitt, the Dean of Emmanuel, well known for his BBC series The Sea of Faith." Then he turned to Cupitt. "Don," he said, "I was in a bookshop earlier and I saw a copy of your new book. It had fallen on the floor. I left it there."

Mark said...

I've not been able to find the answer to this online, maybe you can help Ben.

Are any of these papers previously published? In particular I'm interested in the paper on Simone Weil and the Necessary Existence of God and the paper on Adams and the defeat of evil.

If you can point me in the right direction, I'd appreciate it.

Anonymous said...

At least Crossan is honest enough to know that he doesnt have any answers, unlike Harts' "right"-thinking fellow travellers and their "spendours" of reason.

Anonymous said...


All of the chapters in Williams' book have been published previously.

The one on Simone Weil:

'The necessary non-existence of God' in Richard H. Bell (ed.) Simone Weil's philosophy of culture: Readings towards a divine humanity (Cambridge: CUP, 1993), pp. 52-76.

The one on McCord Adams:

'Reply: Redeeming sorrows', paper presented at 15th annual conference on philosophy of religion, Claremont, February 1991; printed in D.Z. Phillips (ed.) Religion and morality, Claremont Studies in the Philosophy of Religion (New York: St Martin's Press, 1996), pp. 132-48.

Anonymous said...

At the least, we can observe that David Bentley Hart is not only very intelligent, but that he has a big vocabulary too . . .


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