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Spirit's Gift

The Metaphysical Insight of Claude Bruaire

Antonio López, F.S.C.B.

Publication Year: 2011

Spirit's Gift is the first book in English devoted to the philosophy of Claude Bruaire (1932-1986). Its focus is the notion of gift, a notion that has recently been the subject of lively debate involving Jacques Derrida, Jean-Luc Marion, Marcel Mauss, and others.

Published by: The Catholic University of America Press


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Title Page, Copyright

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pp. vii-x

Father Antonio López has given us a comprehensive study of an original thinker whose work is too little known in English language scholarship. He has traced with firmness and clarity both the development and the final expression of his subject’s thought. Claude Bruaire’s originality is...


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pp. xi-xii

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pp. 1-9

Has anyone promised us anything? Why then are we still waiting?” These disturbing questions that Cesare Pavese’s skepticism was unable to hush set us in front of a dilemma. If we respond negatively to the first question, then we find ourselves unable to explain why it is that the...

Part I: Self-Determining Freedom

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1. The Encounter between Philosophy and Theology

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pp. 13-36

No question is foreign to metaphysics, Bruaire contends, because metaphysics deals with that most important issue which is presupposed in all the other disciplines. Philosophy addresses the decisive, eternal question: “what is being?” Yet, according to Bruaire, to ask about “that which...

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2. Anthropology Beckons

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pp. 37-58

During the first decade of his reflection (1964–74), Bruaire elaborated a systematic anthropology whose outcome is the recognition that man’s very existence is indicative of a constitutive givenness. The interesting aspect of Bruaire’s remarkable speculative effort in search of what is...

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3. Absolute’s Freedom

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pp. 59-79

To enter into the question of man’s existence is to immerse oneself in the mystery of the absolute itself. Every step of Bruaire’s systematic anthropology reveals the impossibility of giving a satisfactory account of who man is if one’s understanding of the absolute is inadequate...

Part II: The Ontology of Gift

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4. Retrieving the Spirit

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pp. 83-113

Bruaire’s approach to metaphysics takes place within the wonder of the encounter with the other, which presents itself as that which is, as it is. Regrettably, as Bruaire illustrates, this wonder has been lost in our modern world because the reality of the spirit is no longer seen; more...

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5. An Ontology of Gift: Finite Spirit

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pp. 114-137

The outcome of Bruaire’s semantic and eidetic analysis of the concept of spirit is the acknowledgment that if the collection of phenomena of spirit “forces us to use the Word gift to name spirit, it is because gift is, from its very beginning, its own essence.” Gift, then, is neither an ontological...

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6. Altogether Gift: Absolute Spirit

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pp. 138-183

The ontological examination of being as gift undertaken so far appears to be too anthropologically burdened to allow for a concept of absolute gift. In fact, if being-gift is being-given and being-in-debt, then it does not seem possible to formulate a concept of gift which, while remaining...

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7. God’s Unfathomable Love: The Confirmation of the Gift

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pp. 184-223

A persistent question regarding the gratuity of gift remains unanswered. As the previous elucidation has shown, Bruaire’s ontodology perceives gift as the proper name of both absolute and finite spirit, and not only for creation. Considering the absolute spirit in terms of gift requires...

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pp. 225-229

It is not at all easy to free human awareness from the captivating idea that the human being can account for his own existence without coming to terms with the question of his own origin. The anthropological turn of modernity, for the sake of pursuing more pressing matters or more...


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pp. 231-251


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pp. 253-262

E-ISBN-13: 9780813216171
Print-ISBN-13: 9780813214436

Page Count: 277
Publication Year: 2011

OCLC Number: 646793867
MUSE Marc Record: Download for Spirit's Gift

Research Areas


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Subject Headings

  • Generosity.
  • Gifts.
  • Philosophical theology.
  • Christianity -- Philosophy.
  • Bruaire, Claude, 1932-1986.
  • Metaphysics.
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