The linguistic turn revealed the hermeneutic interaction between content/ideas and their literary form/structure. Recently, this insight has been applied to the oeuvre of Augustine of Hippo – his Confessiones in particular, though conclusions in recent research very much differ. This is why, in the current article, we adopt different approaches based on this linguistic turn. Our focus is in particular on the so-called Ostia-ecstasy in Confessions IX,10,23, a scene in which we try to distinguish more clearly the role of grace. By investigating how literary/philosophical structural elements (for instance, the motive of three gardens, the narrative of separation, the neoplatonic scheme of ascent of the soul) co-determine Augustine’s (early) reflections about grace, we show that the latter actually escape any attempt to unilaterally interpret them.
|Translated title of the contribution||Grace as a literary topic in the Confessions|
|Journal||Nederlands Theologisch Tijdschrift|
|Publication status||Published - 2017|