Academic journal article Anglican Theological Review

The Ashgate Research Companion to Theological Anthropology

Academic journal article Anglican Theological Review

The Ashgate Research Companion to Theological Anthropology

Article excerpt

The Ashgate Research Companion to Theological Anthropology. Edited by Joshua R. Farris and Charles Taliaferro. Burlington, Vt.: Ashgate Publishing Company, 2015. xx + 404 pp. $149.95 (cloth).

The Ashgate Research Companion to Theological Anthropology is an excellent resource for scholars of all levels. Those new to the discipline of theological anthropology will find a very helpful introduction to the form and content of research. Seasoned academics are provided with excellent essays from leading scholars, each contributing to and advancing the field (particularly with regard to the imago Dei and human constitution). From the structure, to the quality of essays, to the meticulous and quite helpful footnotes peppered throughout, everything about the text contributes to its character as a research companion. The work was put together "with the intention of displaying a variety of methods and positions" (p. xvii) within the discipline of theological anthropology, thereby spurring readers to further reflection on their own. Thus, editors Joshua R. Farris and Charles Taliaferro composed a text as much to open the door into the discipline as to present current scholarship in the field. As such, the book begins conversations, highlights key issues, provides a variety of approaches, and presents a wealth of research that facilitates continued investigation. It truly stands as a companion to those doing research in theological anthropology.

Farris and Taliaferro formally achieve this through the texts layout. The Research Companion is broken into seven parts that highlight the variety of complexities within the discipline. Readers are shown that careful reflection on theological anthropology necessitates conversation with theology, philosophy, evolutionary biology, cognitive neuroscience, and psychology. Consequently, the seven parts range from essays regarding methodology and theologically salient loci (such as accounts of Christology and the imago Dei), to those dedicated to theological, philosophical, and scientific models of theological anthropology, to considerations of humanity in respect to sin and salvation, to essays exploring the intersection between theology and the hard sciences. …

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