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BOOK REVIEWS 379 Hoedl) would warrant a less minimalistic interpretation of Thomas's prominence in the theological controversies of the 70s and 80s of the thirteenth century. This volume claims to examine Thomas's work and influence in light of the newest research. This is very true of Wielockx's article, but not every contribution equally justifies this claim. Still, this collection is a welcome addition to the ongoing investigation of Thomas's thought. It is all the more regrettable, then, that the publishers have decided upon such an exhorbitant price, apparently resigning themselves to the belief that there is no market for the book outside libraries which have already ordered the series. The editors and contributors deserve a wider audience. Bayerische Akademie der Wissenschaften Munich RICHARD SCHENK, O.P. Edith Stein: Scholar, Feminist, Saint. By FREDA MARY 0BEN. New York: Alba House, 1988. Pp. 80. $5.95 (paper). Essays on Woman. By EDITH STEIN. Edited by Dr. L. Gelber and Romaeus Leuven, O.C.D. Translated by Freda Mary Oben. The Collected Works of Edith Stein, Teresa Benedicta of the Cross, Discalced Carmelite, 1891-1942, vol. 2. Washington, DC: ICS Publications , 1987. Pp. ix + 290. $7.95 (paper). Whether as an ample introduction for one unfamiliar with Edith Stein or as a further education for one who already appreciates her legacy, these two books will serve the reader well. The saintly philosopher and educator became a Carmelite nun and eventually a victim of the Holocaust; she was beatified in 1987. Doctor Freda Mary Oben is well qualified to interpret Stein's writings as she, like Edith Stein, is a convert from Judaism to Catholicism and a scholar as well. She began to study Edith Stein after her conversion but }lad to learn German to do it. Essays on Woman is a testimonial to Oben's nearly 30year enterprise. This work is a translation of Die Frau, Ihre Aufgabe nach Natur und Gnade, which contains Edith Stein's lectures and writings on woman, compiled and edited by Dr. L. Gelber and Romaeus Leuven, O.C.D., of the Archivum Carmelitanum Edith Stein in Brussels. These two works can be read in either order, as each supports and elucidates the other, but for an introduction, Edith Stein: Scholar, Feminist, Saint should be read first. Since Oben refers to Stein as Edith in this work, this reviewer will do the same. 380 BOOK REVIEWS The Edith Stein work consists of three chapters. Chapter One is a 37-page, well-documented biography supported by quotations from Edith's writings. Oben's straightforward, lucid style enhances this compact account of the variety of interesting, inspiring, and gripping details of Edith's life. Oben recounts her own tour of the significant places in Edith's life: Breslau, Gottingen, Bergzabern, Speyer, Miinster, Cologne, Echt, Auschwitz. The narrative is supplemented with eight pages of Stein family photographs in the middle of the book. Throughout her life, Edith Stein maintained a strong love for her family and her own Jewish people. Integrated with this is the developĀ· ment and growth of her intellectual life: from an ambivalence toward school to her being among the first women to enter a university to her becoming a university professor, all the while struggling from being at first unable to pray to later working among scholars who were deepĀ· ly spiritual. Several of these scholars were converts from Judaism to Christianity and even to Catholicism. Oben shows how Edith followed this same route, relating her scholarly insights in psychology and philosophy to her spiritual ones and finally turning to Catholicism after a casual encounter with a biography of St. Teresa of Avila. Oben shows how, once a Catholic, Edith used her intellectual ability to study the link between woman's nature and religious education. By 1932 Edith was recognized as the intellectual leader of Catholic feminism in Europe. Oben tells of Edith's entrance into the Carmelite Convent in Cologne in 1933, her life there as Sister Teresa Benedicta of the Cross, and her decision, foreseeing the Holocaust, to hear the Cross for the Jewish people. In a brief but captivating account, Oben tells of Edith's hasty transfer from Cologne to...

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Additional Information

ISSN
2473-3725
Print ISSN
0040-6325
Pages
pp. 379-383
Launched on MUSE
2017-04-05
Open Access
No
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