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BOOK REVIEWS 517 she does on these issues; this is hardly the case. And lastly she fails to discern that some feminist christology does not spring from a love for Jesus and what he has done through his cross and resurrection; rather, Jesus is merely used (and thus abused) to further a theological and political agenda. [Men obviously are not immune from this either.] Despite my disagreements with some of Johnson's arguments and conclusions, and despite my disappointment at the way she addresses the feminist issues, I found this hook to he a basically reliable and clear summary of the christology of the last forty years. Whether it has all been true development, as Johnson maintains, is a debatable question. Nonetheless, this book does elaborate the contemporary issues and possible answers that confront christology today, and for this makes it a book well worth reading. Mother of God Community Washington. D.C. THOMAS WEINANDY, O.F.M. Cap. The Philosophical Theology of John Duns Scotus. By ALLAN B. WOLTER, O.F.M. Ed. Marilyn McCord Adams. Ithaca, N.Y.: Cornell University Press, 1990. Pp. ix+ 356. $47.50. Duns Scotus was a brilliant light that flashed a brief time across the medieval sky hut was destined ultimately to he outshone by other luminaries immediately preceding him (Aquinas) and following him (Ockham). Perhaps no individual in the past half century has done more to illuminate the Subtle Doctor's thought and times than Allan B. Wolter, O.F.M. Both his editing and his translating of primary sources as well as his detailed readings and expositions of Scotus's theories have put medieval scholars in his debt. The present volume is a collection of thirteen essays on particular aspects of Scotus's work, preceded by an introduction. Ten of the essays have been previously published in other sources ranging from .the late 1940s to the present. But as editor Marilyn McCord Adams points out in her forward, many of these can be found only with difficulty in often inaccessible journals and books. Thus the value of this single volume. The essays are grouped under three headings: metaphysics and epistemology, action theory and ethics, and philosophical theology. As is often true with any volume spanning a number of topics and years, the quality of exposition and analysis is uneven. Obviously, in a limited space, I cannot hope to treat all subjects in a volume as comprehensive 518 BOOK REVIEWS as Wolter's. Permit me, however, to begin by making some general comments and then to narrow my remarks to one particular issue. Wolter's introduction to the volume is as clear and concise an overview of Scotus's ideas as one is likely to find anywhere in the literature. In general, the essays in the first part of the book on matters meta· physical and epistemological are quite solid. Here we find explicated many of the concepts which have become identified with Scotus: the formal distinction, univocity of being, the common nature and the hraecceity that constitutes distinct individuals. Wolter does justice to the subtlety and brilliance of Scotus's thinking and allows readers both old and new to Scotus to acknowledge him as a metaphysician for the ages. The author is particularly adept at explicating with helpful analogies some of the Subtle Doctor's most difficult concepts. I benefitted from his thought-provoking comparison between the formal distinction and a spotlight on a stage which can illuminate different and distinguishable aspects of the same reality. The next section on action rtheory and ethics draws in part on Wolter's work which culminated in the 1986 publication of Duns Scotus on the Will and Morality. Wolter has been in the forefront of those who urge that Scotus's description of an innate affection for justice in the will is crucial in understanding the freedom Scotus thought proper to humans. What remains unclear to me is how this strand in Scotus's writing relates to others which clearly imply a libertarian view of free• dom emphasizing the will's utter self-determination. The problem I see is this: if the will truly is self-determining, then an innate affectio justitiae seems to...

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Additional Information

ISSN
2473-3725
Print ISSN
0040-6325
Pages
pp. 517-522
Launched on MUSE
2017-04-05
Open Access
No
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