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New titles just published

19 April 2024

This week’s selection: Sonorous Desert in paperback, ethics and the Gifford Lectures, and an introduction to Dostoevsky

Sonorous Desert: What deep listening taught Early Christian monks — and what it can teach us by Kim Haines-Eitzen (Princeton, £12.99 (£11.69); 978-0-691-25928-4). New in paperback

“Sonorous Desert reveals how desert sounds taught ancient monks about solitude, silence, and the life of community, and how they can help us understand ourselves if we slow down and listen.”

The Disappearance of Ethics: The Gifford Lectures by Oliver O’Donovan (Eerdmans, £30.99 (£27.89); 978-0-8028-8349-0).

“This book contends that contemporary ethics has lost its object (good), frontier (time), and agent (person).  O’Donovan traces the development of these concepts from Greek philosophy through early Christianity, the Enlightenment, and into the modern era. Engaging with a range of thinkers including Aristotle, Augustine of Hippo, Max Scheler, Karl Barth, and more, O’Donovan shows how ethics has lost its heart and how the field can regain its purpose. He completes his lectures by integrating theology and philosophy to recover ethics.” 

Dostoevsky: A very short introduction by Deborah Martinsen (OUP, £8.99 (£8.09); 978-0-19-886433-2).

“Deborah Martinsen explores Dostoevsky's tumultuous life story: his political imprisonment and narrow escape from execution, his Siberian exile, his gambling addiction, his romantic marriage, and his literary success. Martinsen also delves into his major works. Each chapter analyses a key theme or aspect of Dostoevsky’s writing that showcases his profound insights into human nature and society: doubling, freedom, shame, social justice, scandal, aesthetics, ethics, faith, and the eternal questions.”

Selected by Frank Nugent, of the Church House Bookshop, which operates the Church Times Bookshop.

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