Item description for The Language of Grace: Flannery O'Connor, Walker Percy, and Iris Murdoch (Seabury Classics) by Peter S. Hawkins...
Overview Explores both traditional and contemporary ways that grace has been handled in literature. Includes traditional examples such as the parables of Jesus, and more contemporary examples such as O'Connor's A Good Man is Hard to Find.
Publishers Description Hawkins explores both traditional and contemporary ways grace has been handled in literature. The traditional representation of grace is explained using, among other things, the parables of Jesus. Then he turns to more contemporary literature, including O'Connor's A Good Man is Hard to Find, Percy's The Second Coming, and Murdoch's A Word Child. Through these novels and short stories, Hawkins highlights the impoverishment of spirit and imagination when religious language fails us. He presents three writers struggling to bridge the gap between ourselves and those mysterious realities we can no longer talk about.
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Peter S. Hawkins is Professor of Religion at Boston University, where he directs the Luce Program in Scripture and Literary Arts. His publications include Dante's Testaments: Essays on Scriptural Imagination (1999), The Poets' Dante: Twentieth-Century Reflections (edited with Rachel Jacoff, 2000), and The Language of Grace (2005).
Peter S. Hawkins currently resides in Boston. Peter S. Hawkins has an academic affiliation as follows - Boston University.
Peter S. Hawkins has published or released items in the following series...
Reviews - What do customers think about Language Of Grace: Flannery O'connor, Walker Percy, And Iris Murdoch (Seabury Classics)?
Uses Flannery O'Connor's work to illustrate how she, Walker Percy and Iris Murdoch wrote for their "unbelieving audience"... Jul 23, 2008
Hawkins uses the four chapters which comprise this book to focus on the "central loss of Christianity in Western culture" and what this loss has meant to the literary art produced by Flannery O'Connor, Walker Percy, and Iris Murdoch.
Contends that the goal of these three authors -- just as it was for the writers of such classics as Canterbury Tales, the Faerie Queene, Paradise Lost, and The Pilgrim's Progress -- is to inspire readers to turn from wickedness "to love and do good."
Examines problems the three writers encounter as they continue in this tradition of "bringing the reader to a new state of consciousness and self-awareness." Then, discusses, in this context, O'Connor's realization that "she had to discover a new language of grace in order to confront the reader with the experience of God."
Outlines O'Connor's "strategy for approaching her audience," describes her "traditional Christian sensibility," and focuses on the context within which she considered her fiction realistic. Then, discusses her use of the bizarre and the grotesque, along with distortion and exaggeration to reach unbelieving readers; her use of biblical allusion; and her successful reliance upon her "narrational voice to suggest the ultimate meaning of her stories." Refers to the role of the narrator in John Huston's 1979 film version of Wise Blood, "Parker's Back," "Revelation," and "The Artificial Nigger," followed by a careful reading of "A Good Man Is Hard to Find."
Devotes a chapter each to Walker Percy and Iris Murdoch, using O'Connor's work to illustrate and compare how each of the three worked to communicate with their "unbelieving audience." Suggests that Flannery O'Connor provides readers with "a set of critical terms and fictional strategies" to better understand how she and other Christian writers use "clarity and mystery" to bridge the gap between themselves and their readers.
R. Neil Scott / Middle Tennessee State University
a way bit over my head Jul 31, 2007
I am sure it wonderful book, but it just was to much for my liking at this point in time in my life.