Two Guides for the Journey by Sheryl OvermyerTwo Guides for the Journey by Sheryl Overmyer

Two Guides for the Journey

bySheryl Overmyer

Paperback | October 27, 2016

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Thomas Aquinas and William Langland inherited the dynamic metaphor of journeying as a fundamental concept of the Christian life and harnessed it to animate their magisterial texts: the Summa Theologiae and Piers Plowman. Christians' journey back to God consists in the way of charity, yet it is far from straightforward or sequential. Rather, it is impinged upon by epistemic ambiguity, our willful continued habits of resistance, and inherent limitations on our perfection. In sum, the virtues are divine gifts humanly received, treasure in earthen vessels. Together these authors show the complexity we ourselves will find along this life's journey, enable our understanding to appreciate that complexity, and in limited ways cultivate in us the virtues they describe.""In Two Guides for the Journey, Sheryl Overmyer proffers the unexpected pair of Piers Plowman and Thomas Aquinas's Summa theologiae as a twofold garland that directs the reader to the life of virtue. While the Summa Theologiae provides the roadmap to a life of perfect virtue as exemplified in Christ's own life, Piers Plowman confronts the reader with the concrete complexity and fragility of human life in search of virtue. The unlikely encounter between the two opens to surprising and salutary insights. A contribution to virtue ethics that is as unconventional as it is provocative.""--Reinhard Hutter, Professor of Christian Theology, Duke University Divinity School""By pairing Thomas Aquinas and William Langland, Sheryl Overmyer accomplishes a number of things. She shows that, contrary to the claims of some, a moral theology focused on the virtues did not disappear after Aquinas (only to be revived in our own day) but continued on in such fourteenth-century authors as Langland. She also shows how such a moral theology can be carried on either in Aquinas's dialectical mode or in Langland's poetic and allegorical mode, and the difference that such approaches can make. Perhaps most importantly, she introduces Langland into contemporary discussion of virtue as a figure whose poetic form complements Aquinas's dialectical approach by highlighting the difficult and messy path that virtue takes in the actual lives of Christians.""--Frederick Christian Bauerschmidt, Professor of Theology, Loyola University Maryland""Deftly juxtaposing Thomas's Summa Theologiae and Langland's Piers Plowman as twin guides for the journey of the soul back to God, Overmyer displays sacramental theology as the intimate companion of social criticism. The journey is one of formation in the virtues and most especially of growth in the infused supernatural virtue of charity, fed by the grace of the sacraments but blocked--as Langland's trenchant allegory reveals--by the refusal of love."" --Jennifer A. Herdt, Professor of Christian Ethics, Yale University""Two Guides for the Journey juxtaposes two of the most intricate, capacious, and important theological works of the medieval period: Thomas Aquinas' Summa theologiae and William Langland's Piers Plowman. In this innovative and ambitious study, Overmyer proves to be a masterful reader who is highly attuned to the nuances of both systematic moral theology and allegorical poetry. Revealing powerful correspondences between these different theological modes, Overmyer uncovers the strenuousness of virtue as an end pursued by wounded and vulnerable human beings seeking perfect unity in Christ. Two Guides for the Journey is a gift to its readers, deepening our understanding of virtue ethics, medieval theology, and the complexities of Christian life.""--Kate Crassons, Associate Professor of English, Lehigh UniversitySheryl Overmyer is Assistant Professor of Catholic Studies at DePaul University, Chicago, Illinois.
Title:Two Guides for the JourneyFormat:PaperbackDimensions:154 pages, 9 × 6 × 0.36 inPublished:October 27, 2016Publisher:Wipf and Stock PublishersLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:1498228992

ISBN - 13:9781498228992