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Thomas Merton's American Prophecy

Robert Inchausti

7 ratings by Goodreads
ISBN 10: 0791436365 / ISBN 13: 9780791436363
Published by State University of New York Press, 1998
New Condition: New Soft cover
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Bibliographic Details

Title: Thomas Merton's American Prophecy

Publisher: State University of New York Press

Publication Date: 1998

Binding: Paperback

Book Condition: New

About this title


In Thomas Merton's American Prophecy, Robert Inchausti provides a succinct summary and original interpretation of Merton's contribution to American thought. More than just a critical biography, this book lifts Merton out of the isolation of his monastic sub-culture and brings him back into dialogue with contemporary secular thinkers. In the process, it reopens one of the roads not taken at that fateful, cultural crossroads called "The Sixties." Inchausti presents Merton not as the spokesman for any particular group, cause, or idea, but rather as the quintessential American outsider who defined himself in opposition to the world, then discovered a way back into dialogue with that world and compassion for it. As a result, Merton was the harbinger of a still yet to be realized eschatological counter-culture: the unacknowledged precursor, alternative, and heir to Norman O. Brown's defense of mystery in the life of the mind.


"This is a fresh approach to Thomas Merton, situating him as an 'apostle' and 'prophet' in American intellectual history. His prophetic gifts were many, but in articulating whatever issues faced Americans, his voice remained faithful to his religious convictions. His strengths, as Robert Inchausti brings out so well, lie in the fact that he could be free enough to be a critic of both Right and Left. The author writes with a deep sense of Merton's own contemplative spirit, and is definitely simpatico. This is a book I wish I could have said I had written--it reflects my own summation of Merton's American Prophecy as we come to the end of this century." -- Brother Patrick Hart, General Editor of The Journals of Thomas Merton and Merton's last secretary

"This is the best treatment I have seen of Merton as both social critic and embodied antithesis of postmodernity." -- Curt Cadorette, University of Rochester

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