The Future of Hope: Christian Tradition amid Modernity and Postmodernity

By Miroslav Volf; William Katerberg | Go to book overview

Seeking Justice in Hope

NICHOLAS WOLTERSTORFF

Every human endeavor that is not coerced requires, as a minimum, the hope that its goal will be achieved. Optimism is not required — optimism being understood as the expectation that one will achieve what one endeavors. The ambulance attendant who endeavors to resuscitate the person pulled down by waves at the beach may not expect to succeed in his endeavor; he may expect that he will not succeed. He may not be at all optimistic. Yet as long as he sees some hope, he tries — as long as there's a chance. If he thinks there is no hope, he gives up and stops trying.

Maybe there are one or two sorts of exceptions. Imagine a person who has just suffered considerable paralysis as the result of an accident. The doctors are now trying to determine the extent of the paralysis. One of them says to the patient, “See if you can wiggle your right thumb.” So the patient tries. In this case, the person does not know whether there's a chance of his wiggling his right thumb. He does not know one way or the other as to whether it is hopeless. He tries to wiggle his right thumb so as to find out. But apart from cases in which one tries to do something so as to find out whether it's hopeless, or alternatively, to prove that it is hopeless, endeavor presupposes hope — not optimism necessarily, but hope. Though let it be said that often we give up on an endeavor if we are not optimistic about its success; it's just not worth trying.

-77-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
The Future of Hope: Christian Tradition amid Modernity and Postmodernity
Table of contents

Table of contents

Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
Items saved from this book
  • Bookmarks
  • Highlights & Notes
  • Citations
/ 235

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Search by... Author
    Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.