"Let books be your dining table, / And you shall be full of delights. / Let them be your
And you shall sleep restful nights" (St. Ephraim the Syrian).

Monday, June 22, 2020

Oxford Handbook of Russian Religious Thought

I have been delighted to be asked to contribute to several Oxford handbooks and collections over the last few years. But even before doing so I recognized how valuable these books were, which very often feature leading scholars in various fields giving a helpfully comprehensive treatment of a given area. That will be no different in a forthcoming handbook late this year: The Oxford Handbook of Russian Religious Thought, eds. George Pattison, Randall A. Poole, and Caryl Emerson (Oxford UP, November 2020), 736pp.

About this collection the press tells us this:
The Oxford Handbook of Russian Religious Thought is an authoritative new reference and interpretive volume detailing the origins, development, and influence of one of the richest aspects of Russian cultural and intellectual life - its religious ideas. After setting the historical background and context, the Handbook follows the leading figures and movements in modern Russian religious thought through a period of immense historical upheavals, including seventy years of officially atheist communist rule and the growth of an exiled diaspora with, e.g., its journal The Way. Therefore the shape of Russian religious thought cannot be separated from long-running debates with nihilism and atheism. Important thinkers such as Losev and Bakhtin had to guard their words in an environment of religious persecution, whilst some views were shaped by prison experiences. Before the Soviet period, Russian national identity was closely linked with religion - linkages which again are being forged in the new Russia. Relevant in this connection are complex relationships with Judaism.

In addition to religious thinkers such as Philaret, Chaadaev, Khomiakov, Kireevsky, Soloviev, Florensky, Bulgakov, Berdyaev, Shestov, Frank, Karsavin, and Alexander Men, the Handbook also looks at the role of religion in aesthetics, music, poetry, art, film, and the novelists Dostoevsky and Tolstoy. Ideas, institutions, and movements discussed include the Church academies, Slavophilism and Westernism, theosis, the name-glorifying (imiaslavie) controversy, the God-seekers and God-builders, Russian religious idealism and liberalism, and the Neopatristic school. Occultism is considered, as is the role of tradition and the influence of Russian religious thought in the West.

Here, also, is the table of contents on which you will recognize many names featured, reviewed, or interviewed on here over the years:

FOREWORD, Metropolitan Hilarion Of Volokalamsk

1: Christianity in Rus' and Muscovy, David Goldfrank
2: The Orthodox Church and Religious Life in Imperial Russia, Nadieszda Kizenko
3: The Orthodox Church and Religion in Revolutionary Russia, 1894-1924, Vera Shevzov
4: Russian Religious Life in the Soviet Era, Zoe Knox

5: The Theological-Aesthetic Vision of Metropolitan Filaret, Oleg V. Bychkov
6: Russian Orthodox Thought in the Church's Clerical Academies, Patrick Lally Michelson
7: Petr Chaadaev and the Slavophile-Westernizer Debate, G. M. Hamburg
8: Slavophilism and the Origins of Russian Religious Philosophy, Randall A. Poole
9: Nihilism, Victoria Frede
10: Dostoevsky, George Pattison
11: Tolstoy, Caryl Emerson
12: Vladimir Soloviev as a Religious Philosopher, Catherine Evtuhov

13: God-seeking, God-building, and the New Religious Consciousness, Erich Lippman
14: Theosis in Early Twentieth-Century Russian Religious Thought, Ruth Coates
15: The Liberalism of Russian Religious Idealism, Randall A. Poole
16: Sergei Bulgakov's Intellectual Journey, 1900-1922, Regula M. Zwahlen
17: Pavel Florensky: At the Boundary of Immanence and Transcendence, Christoph Schneider
18: The Personalism of Nikolai Berdiaev, Ana Siljak
19: The Name-Glorifiers (Imiaslavie) Controversy, Scott M. Kenworthy
20: Judaism and Russian Religious Thought, Dominic Rubin

21: Russian Religious Aesthetics in the First Half of the Twentieth Century, Victor V. Bychkov
22: 'Musical Metaphysics' in Late Imperial Russia, Rebecca Mitchell
23: Furor Liturgicus: The Religious Concerns of Russian Poetry, Martha M. F. Kelly
24: The Icon and Visual Arts at the Time of the Russian Religious Renaissance, Clemena Antonova

25: The Way, The Journal of the Russian Emigration (1925-1940), Antoine Arjakovsky
26: Berdyaev and Christian Existentialism, George Pattison
27: Lev Shestov: The Meaning of Life and the Critique of Scientific Knowledge, Ramona Fotiade
28: Sergius Bulgakov in Exile: The Flowering of a Systematic Theologian, Fr. Robert F. Slesinski
29: Semyon Frank, Philip Boobbyer
30: Lev Karsavin, Martin Beisswenger
31: Varieties of Neopatristics: Georges Florovsky, Vladimir Lossky, and Alexander Schmemann, Paul L. Gavrilyuk
32: 'The Work': The Teachings of G. I. Gurdieff and P. D. Ouspensky in Russia and Beyond, Steven J. Sutcliffe And John P. Wilmett

33: Alexei Losev: 'The Last Russian Philosopher' of the Silver Age, Sr. Theresa Obolevitch
34: Religious Thought and Experience in the Prison Camps, Andrea Gulotta
35: Seeking God and Spiritual Salvation in Russian Cinema, Alina Birzache
36: Mikhail Bakhtin, Caryl Emerson
37: Alexander Men and Russian Religious Thought in the Post-Soviet Situation, Katerina Kocandrle Bauer And Tim Noble

38: Tradition in the Russian Theological World, Rowan Williams
39: The Influence of Russian Religious Thought on Western Theology in the Twentieth Century, Paul Valliere
40: The Tradition of Christian Thought in the History of Russian Culture, Igor I. Evlampiev

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