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Enlightenment & Alienation: An Essay towards a Trinitarian Theology
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Enlightenment & Alienation: An Essay towards a Trinitarian Theology


Wipf & Stock 2006

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Gathering Interest


In this critique of the legacy of the Enlightenment and its effect on theology, Colin Gunton focuses on three core Christian concepts: truth, freedom, and faith. He argues that in these areas, the emphasis of Enlightenment thought on the observable and objective has prevented us from believing in what cannot be seen or scientifically deduced—alienating us from reality, from ourselves, and from God. However, as Gunton argues, the Trinitarian structure of Christian belief contains within itself the resources to overcome this alienation and achieve an integrated perspective. He explores how in the doctrine of the Trinity—especially in Jesus Christ, in whom the mysterious and divine joined the physical and observable—we can find a way to give validity both to scientific frames of thought and to religious belief.

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Key Features

  • Analyzes the influence of the Enlightenment on our contemporary beliefs and theology
  • Critiques the Enlightenment emphasis on knowledge
  • Focuses on the doctrine of the Trinity and how it joins scientific thought and religious belief


  • Foreword by Lesslie Newbigin
  • Preface
  • Introduction
  • Part One: Seeing and Believing
    • The Way of Alienation
    • Dissenting Voices
    • Hints and Pointers
  • Part Two: Thinking and Acting
    • The Demand for Autonomy
    • The Search for Authentic Humanity
    • The Gift of Freedom
  • Part Three: Reading and Understanding
    • Biblical Studies and the Bible
    • Scripture and Scripture’s God
    • The Pupil and the Judge
  • Conclusion
  • Notes & Indexes

Product Details

About Colin Gunton

Colin E. Gunton (1941–2003) was professor of systematic theology at King’s College, London from 1969 until his death. He was appointed professor of theology in 1984 and then served as head of the Department of Theology & Religious Studies from 1993–96. In 1992 Gunton delivered the Bampton Lectures at the University of Oxford and in 1993 delivered the Warfield Lectures at Princeton Theological Seminary. Together with John Webster, Gunton cofounded the International Journal of Systematic Theology. He is also the author of Intellect and Action: Elucidations on Christian Theology and the Life of Faith, The Theology of Reconciliation, Father, Son and Holy Spirit: Toward a Fully Trinitarian Theology, The Promise of Trinitarian Theology, and editor of The Doctrine of Creation: Essays in Dogmatics, History and Philosophy.

Sample Pages from the Print Edition