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182 Antiphon 13.2 (2009) On the other hand, Candler’s insightful comparison of theology and tradition to a craft or trade (124ff) is an implicit corrective to any potential imbalances, for the “what” and the “how” that are handed down to an apprentice are equally important if not identical . Candler also explicitly affirms in several places the “both/and” quality of his subject: consider, for example, the beautiful statement, “Traditio is a ‘handing over,’ not just of something known, but of the soul itself” (127). There are several other facets of TRM worthy of mention, such as Candler’s treatment of Christianity and rhetoric, but which exceed the scope of this review. Suffice it to say that despite some areas requiring qualification from a Catholic theological perspective, Theology, Rhetoric , and Manuduction is an outstanding resource as well as initiation into the mind of St Thomas Aquinas and the sorely neglected realm of liturgical ontology. Candler’s work, along with Berger’s and, in a different way, O’Neill’s, contributes much to a conversation worthy of the Angelic Doctor. Ralf van Bühren Kunst und Kirche im 20. Jahrhundert. Die Rezeption des Zweiten Vatikanischen Konzils (Konziliengeschichte, Reihe B: Untersuchungen) Paderborn: Schöningh Verlag, 2008 940 pages. €128 This comprehensive and fastidiously researched study, originally presented as a doctoral thesis at the Roman University of the Holy Cross, examines the difficult relationship between the Church and the arts from 1800 to the present age. The periodization is significant, because with the French Revolution and the Napoleonic wars the Church ceased to be the principle patron of the arts. The “secularization of the European mind in the nineteenth century” (Owen Chadwick) created a rift that was widened in the early twentieth century by an avant-garde that consciously broke with received traditions and initiated the modernist movement in art and architecture. The author presents the topic of his research in four substantial chapters: the first one discusses the relationship between the Church and the arts between 1800 and the eve of the Second Vatican Council (41-207); the second one analyses the Council’s pronouncements on art and artists (215-251); the third chapter is concerned with the turbulent period of the post-conciliar liturgical reform between 1964 and 1985 (253-400); the fourth chapter reflects upon the situation 183 Book Reviews of art in the Church between 1985 and the present, a period that has been marked by a more mature reception of the Council (401-626). The author’s concluding reflections (627-647) are followed by a very helpful appendix with documents of the Magisterium about art, ranging from Pius XII’s Encyclical Mediator Dei of 1947 to Benedict XVI’s Post-synodal Apostolic Exhortation Sacramentum Caritatis of 2007, an exhaustive bibliography, and 98 colored illustrations. It is regrettable that there are no indices, an omission that limits the usefulness of the bulky volume. The book is published in the prestigious series “Konziliengeschichte ,” and this seems appropriate because of the pivotal role the Second Vatican Council had in this aspect of the Church’s life. Following the lead of Mediator Dei, to which it is much indebted, the Council’s 1963 Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy Sacrosanctum Concilium contained significant pronouncements on sacred art and its relationship with the sacred liturgy. The mere fact that the Church’s supreme Magisterium was concerned with this subject is also indicative of a crisis – a crisis that was clearly identified by Pope Paul VI in his homily to artists given in the Sistine Chapel on 7 May 1964, when he spoke with great frankness about contemporary art having adopted the “language of Babylon” and no longer being able to express the sacred. The crisis was exacerbated by a reception of the Council according to the spirit of the age, which lead to a widespread rejection of the Church’s patrimony of liturgy and art in the name of “desacralisation ” (397). Van Bühren rightly insists that the iconoclasm of the post-conciliar period finds no justification in the conciliar documents or in subsequent ecclesiastical legislation. It would seem obvious that the Fathers of Vatican II presupposed that new artistic forms must have...

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Additional Information

ISSN
1543-9933
Print ISSN
1543-9925
Pages
pp. 182-184
Launched on MUSE
2020-03-24
Open Access
No
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