Between the Icon and the Idol: The Human Person and the Modern State in Russian Literature and Thought-Chaadayev, Soloviev, Grossman Artur Mrówczyński-Van Allen

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Between the Icon and the Idol: The Human Person and the Modern State in Russian Literature and Thought-Chaadayev, Soloviev, Grossman  by  Artur Mrówczyński-Van Allen

Between the Icon and the Idol: The Human Person and the Modern State in Russian Literature and Thought-Chaadayev, Soloviev, Grossman by Artur Mrówczyński-Van Allen
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The totalitarian state clearly intends to eliminate all those forms of organic community that rival the absolute loyalty of the individual to the state. This god is a jealous god. . . . Mrowczyński-Van Allens diagnosis is therefore no less relevantMoreThe totalitarian state clearly intends to eliminate all those forms of organic community that rival the absolute loyalty of the individual to the state.

This god is a jealous god. . . . Mrowczyński-Van Allens diagnosis is therefore no less relevant after the fall of the Berlin Wall. And his proposed cure is no less salutary. He appeals to the work of Grossman and other voices from the East to oppose the idolatry of the deified self with the icon, which opens up a distance in which giving and forgiving can occur.

Eastern voices are so helpful because they refuse to quarantine theological questions- the borders between theology, politics, and literature are fluid and porous, because they are all a part of an integrated life. The holism of totalitarianism must be opposed by another kind of holism that replaces the idol with the icon. At the same time, the aspiration of secularism to separate politics from theology, and power from love, must be opposed by a politics based on an opening of human persons to God and to each other, the kind of self-donation found in Grossman, and for Christians, on the Cross.--From the Foreword by William T.

CavanaughMrowczynski-Van Allen argues that the revolutionary socialists and the national socialists were both heirs of the liberals whose primary project was to offer the world a humanism without God. . . . The author recommends a Christocentric reading of history and a Christocentric reading of the human person as an icon of Trinitarian love and creative generosity.--Tracey Rowland, John Paul II Institute for Marriage and FamilyIn a wide-ranging work that takes intelligent account of figures ranging from Marx to Dostoevsky, from Schmitt to Solovyov, and from Voegelin to Grossman, Mrowczynski-Van Allen offers a remarkable rereading of the theological construction of the modern state and how it is the case that only a non-dualist Christian theology can counter the insane oscillation of the modern state between liberalism and totalitarianism.--John Milbank, Centre of Theology and PhilosophyThe authors profound Christian convictions, as well as his love and knowledge of Russian culture, serve as a guide through a fascinating and complex philosophical task at the intersection of literature and theology.

. . . Through this work the author shows us that we have a choice: to bow to the idol of the modern state or to live in the exercise of our own nature of the image of love.--Konstantin Antonov, St. Tikhons Orthodox UniversityThis book is ecclesial practice in the face of the inhumanity of secular totalitarianism, one that dares to offer the world a lesson in how to learn again to breathe with two lungs.

I hope this book will do more than spark a new debate. I hope it will help provoke a new practice for a church too domesticated by liberal categories, a church that needs to free herself from this bondage and learn anew the joy and glorious freedom of being the church.--Mons. Francisco Javier Martínez Fernández, Archbishop of Granada, SpainArtur Mrowczynski-Van Allen is director of the Slavic Department at the International Center for the Study of the Christian Orient in Granada, Spain.

He is Currently Professor at the Instituto de Filosofía Edith Stein and the Instituto de Teología Lumen Gentium (Granada), where he teaches Philosophy of History and Political Philosophy. He is also member of the Scientific Council of the Centro Studi Vita e Destino, Vasily Grossman (Turin), and Consultant of Episcopal Commission for Interconfessional Relations of the Episcopal Conference of Spain (Madrid).

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