The Beauty of the Cross
The Passion of Christ in Theology and the Arts from the Catacombs to the Eve of the Renaissance
By (author) Richard Viladesau
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Beauty of the Cross by Richard Viladesau
Book DescriptionAs the success of Mel Gibson's film, The Passion of the Christ, has forcefully reminded us, the suffering and death of Christ have traditionally been seen as an appropriate focus for Christian devotion. Although the earliest Christians avoided pictorial images, the cross would soon become the dominant symbol of the faith. The first depictions of the Crucifixion were triumphalist, but over time more realistic images became common. Despite the horror of Crucifixion, however, we often find such pictures beautiful. It is an apparent paradox that some of the great monuments of Western art are representations of the brutal torture and execution of Christ. In this book Richard Viladesau seeks to understand the beauty of the cross as it developed in both theology and art from the early Christian era through the high middle ages. He argues that art and symbolism functioned as an alternative strand of theological expression-sometimes parallel to, sometimes interwoven with, and sometimes in tension with formal theological reflection on the meaning of the Crucifixion and its role in salvation history. In this, the first of an envisioned two-volume work, Viladesau focuses on poetry and the visual arts. The second volume will pursue the topic up to the present day and will draw primarily on music and film.
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Book DetailsISBN: 9780195188110
(242mm x 165mm x 21mm)
Imprint: Oxford University Press Inc
Publisher: Oxford University Press Inc
Publish Date: 1-Dec-2005
Country of Publication: United States
Books By Author Richard Viladesau
Pathos of the Cross, Hardback (April 2014)
This volume traces how theologies and the arts of the Baroque period stressed the "pathos" of Christ's death on the cross as the means of salvation, and invited believers to an emotional response that binds them to Christ's saving act.
Theological Aesthetics, Paperback (January 2013)
Richard Viladesau explores the role of aesthetic experience in our perception and understanding of the holy.
Triumph of the Cross, Hardback (May 2008)
This is a sequel to Richard Viladesau's well-received study, The Beauty of the Cross: The Passion of Christ in Theology and the Arts from the Catacombs to the Eve of the Renaissance (2006). It continues his project of presenting theological history by using art as both an independant religious or theological 'text' and as a means of understanding the cultural context for academic theology.
Beauty of the Cross, Paperback (April 2008)» View all books by Richard Viladesau
In this volume Richard Viladesau seeks to understand the beauty of the cross as it developed in both theology and art from their beginnings until the eve of the renaissance.
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Author Biography - Richard Viladesau
Richard Viladesau is Professor of Theology at Fordham University. He is the author of Theological Aesthetics (OUP 1999).
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