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Title: Is There Such a Thing as a Neo-Augustinian Response to Religious Diversity?
Subtitle: A Comparison of John Milbank and Joseph Ratzinger
Author(s): DEPOORTERE, Frederiek
Journal: Louvain Studies
Volume: 37    Issue: 2-3   Date: 2013   
Pages: 224-252
DOI: 10.2143/LS.37.2.3038713

Abstract :
The label ‘neo-Augustinian’ is used to refer to theologians who fall back on Augustine in times of upheaval. In today’s world, one major challenge faced by Christian theologians is the one posed by religious diversity. This article will investigate if there is such a thing as a contemporary neo-Augustinian approach to religious diversity. It will proceed through a comparison of two prominent, contemporary neo-Augustinian theologians, John Milbank and Joseph Ratzinger, with the help of the following research questions: Is religious diversity an issue for Milbank and Ratzinger? How do both theologians evaluate religious diversity and how do they respond to it? Do they fall back on Augustine when doing so? The comparison between Milbank and Ratzinger undertaken here will suggest that there is no such a thing as a contemporary neo-Augustinian approach to religious diversity (or at least not in the two authors that will be compared here). In the second part of the article, the scope will be widened and the way Milbank and Ratzinger respond to the pluralist theology of religions will be investigated. This will lead to the suggestion that Milbank and Ratzinger do not sufficiently take into account that 'the break of the Enlightenment' (Slavoj Žižek) cannot be reversed.

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