Speaking as one of the founders of American Continental philosophy, Calvin O. Schrag offers here a discussion of a complex question: whether and how the ždeathÓ of the god conceived as a 'highest being' in Western and modern traditions might open a new space within which to rethink God in terms of a 'gift' or 'giving' that would stand beyond the usual spate of metaphysical categories.
Schrag begins by elucidating traditional theistic conceptions of God in terms of Being and explains how those conceptions inevitably give way to atheism. Moving beyond atheism and theism alike, he explores alternative understandings of God in terms of 'the gift' by turning first from ontology to ethics, and then from ethics toward an understanding of the gift as beyond any economy of exchange and return. Seeking a notion of God compatible with the postmodern perspective, Schrag's work stands as a helpful guide, providing an insight into an often impenetrable philosophical and theological enigma.
Northwestern University Press