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The Company of the Creative: A Christian Reader's Guide to Great Literature and Its Themes [Paperback]

By David L. Larsen (Author)
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Item description for The Company of the Creative: A Christian Reader's Guide to Great Literature and Its Themes by David L. Larsen...

A History of Biblical Preaching from the Old Testament to the Modern Era) contends that in the modern world "casual television and junk reading dilute the content of the mind...and the interior life has become bloated with malnourishment." In addition, he says, many Christians believe that the Bible contains all the truth they need about the world, so they do not read beyond the Bible. The author maintains, however, that "all Christians need to read broadly, deeply, and copiously." He asserts that reading is vital to an engagement of the mind with serious issues of faith and culture. Reading, he notes, opens us to insights about issues and people; it stimulates the imagination and introduces us to beauty. In a series of insightful chapters, Larsen provides short, thematic summaries of more than 500 thought-provoking works of fiction, poetry, drama and biography that incite the imagination. He arranges the chapters according to historical period; for example, in "Identifying Our Assets from the Middle Ages," Larsen ranges over Augustine, Jerome, Dante, Aquinas, Bernard of Clairvaux, Beowulf, Chaucer and the Arthurian legends. In each of his summaries, the author is attentive to the lessons that Christians can take from these writings. Such interpretive lenses sometimes cloud Larsen's summaries, however. For instance, he remarks that "the actual state of Willa Cather's spiritual life is questionable...and whether she had truly come to terms with God at her death is a matter of conjecture." Such remarks fail to consider the power of the writing and turn readers away from the very fiction that Larsen urges them to read. While his book is an admirable attempt to recover the importance of reading for the Christian life, Larsen's comments are often too narrow to be helpful.

Publishers Description
Great works and authors of the world are introduced and reviewed artistically, intellectually, and theologically. Persons discussed include Plato, Milton, Dickens, Shakespeare, Charlotte Bronte, Mark Twain, and C.S. Lewis.

Citations And Professional Reviews
The Company of the Creative: A Christian Reader's Guide to Great Literature and Its Themes by David L. Larsen has been reviewed by professional book reviewers and journalists at the following establishments -
  • Publishers Weekly - 07/26/1999 page 81

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Item Specifications...

Studio: Kregel Academic & Professional
Pages   656
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 9.4" Width: 5.76" Height: 1.55"
Weight:   1.98 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Jan 5, 2000
Publisher   Kregel Academic & Professional
ISBN  0825430976  
ISBN13  9780825430978  

Availability  124 units.
Availability accurate as of Oct 27, 2016 05:09.
Usually ships within one to two business days from La Vergne, TN.
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More About David L. Larsen

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! David L. Larsen (B.A., Stanford University; M.Div., Fuller Theological Seminary; D.D., Trinity College) is Professor Emeritus of Preaching at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School in Deerfield, Illinois. He pastored churches for thirty-two years and has taught at Trinity since 1981. He is the author of several books, including The Company of the Preachers, The Company of the Creative, The Anatomy of Preaching, and Biblical Spirituality.

David L. Larsen currently resides in Lincolnshire, in the state of Illinois.

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Product Categories

1Books > Subjects > Literature & Fiction > Books & Reading > General
2Books > Subjects > Literature & Fiction > Books & Reading
3Books > Subjects > Reference > Foreign Languages > General
4Books > Subjects > Reference > Foreign Languages
5Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Christian Living
6Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Fiction & Poetry

Christian Product Categories
Books > General Interest > Literature & The Arts > General

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Reviews - What do customers think about The Company of the Creative: A Christian Reader's Guide to Great Literature and Its Themes?

Fantastic Survey of Great Literature  Dec 9, 2007
David Larsen is a professor of preaching and pastoral theology at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School. But he is also an avid reader, and he does a wonderful job of introducing the beginner to some of the greatest writers who have ever lived. He gives short biographical sketches of people such as Tacitus, Augustine, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Leo Tolstoy, Isaac Bashevis Singer, William Shakespeare, John Steinbeck, Pearl Buck, Flannery O'Connor, Elie Wiesel, and many, many more.

Dr. Larsen is a sympathetic guide through the lives of these brilliant men and women. You can almost feel his sadness as he describes some of the tragedies and failures that these authors experienced. You can also feel his pride and his admiration as he describes their moments of triumph and success.

The section on Shakespeare is the largest portion of the book. For most authors, Larsen only discusses a few select writings. But with Shakespeare, he discusses nearly every play.

Since Dr. Larsen is a Christian, he also sounds off on the spiritual and religious perspectives of each writer, noting how many great writers mined the Bible for certain phrases and figures of speech. Even the most hardened atheists could not get away from the rich imagery and influence of the Judeo-Christian tradition.

This book will give you the desire to want to go back in time and read some of the world's greatest books as well as some of the more recent releases. I highly recommend it.

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