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Keywords:

  • Milbank;
  • history;
  • modernity;
  • Scotus;
  • secularity

ABSTRACT

This special focus of the Journal of Religious Ethics begins with the mixture of admiration and apprehension that John Milbank's use of historical materials so often inspires and moves to specific reflection on specific figures and texts that appear in his grand story of secular modernity. Throughout, the focus is not on his moral theology per se, but rather on the way he treats certain figures, how he constructs his historical tale, and how his critical enterprise and his normative proposals depend upon his historical efforts. This introduction considers the difficulties of constructing and assessing a Geistesgeschichte, the genre of historical writing that Milbank prefers.