God: An Itinerary Cl

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  • Edition: 00
  • Format: Hardcover
  • Copyright: 2004-04-17
  • Publisher: VERSO

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God, who has changed the lives -- and deaths -- of men and women, has in turn changed His face and His meaning several times over since His birth three thousand years ago. He may have kept the same name throughout, but God has been addressed in many different ways and cannot be said to have the same characteristics in the year 500 BCE as in 400 CE or in the twenty-first century. Nor is He the same entity in Jerusalem or Constantinople as in Rome or New York. The omnipotent and punitive God of the Hebrews is not the consoling and intimate God of the Christians, and is certainly not identical with the impersonal cosmic Energy of the New Agers. Regis Debray's purpose in this major new book is to trace the episodes of the genesis of God, the stages of His itinerary, and the costs of His survival. Debray shifts the spotlight away from the theological foreground and moves it backstage to the machinery of the divine production, going back from the Law to the Tablets themselves, scrutinizing Heaven at its most down-to-earth. Throughout this beautifully illustrated book, he trains his attention less on what was written than on how, materially, it was written: with what implements, on what surface, for what social purpose, and in what physical environment. God: An Itinerary takes the reader from the invention of a God for nomadic cattle herders to a world dominated by God's own moralizing 'cowboys'. In so doing, it links the history of the Everlasting with the history of the West, illuminating both in the process, and throwing light on contemporary civilization itself. Book jacket.

Author Biography

Regis Debray teaches philosophy at the Universite de Lyon III and is director of the European Institute of the History and Science of Religion at the Ecole pratique des hautes etudes.

Table of Contents

A Reader's Guide
Book I: Coronation
An Endpoint Called Origin
High Atop the Dune
Alphabetical Liftoff
Portable Yet Homebound
Book II: Deployment
One For All
The Mediating Body
Salve Regina
The Last Flame
Book III: Effacement
Parricidal Christ
Every Man For Himself
The Eternity of the Eternal
Complementary Notes 289(4)
Bibliography 293(8)
Index 301

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