Title: ‘Nulla in Mundo Pax Sincera …’ Secularisation and Violence in Vattimo and Girard
Authors: Meganck, Erik # ×
Issue Date: 2013
Publisher: Routledge
Series Title: International Journal of Philosophy and Theology vol:74 issue:5 pages:410-431
Abstract: Vattimo holds nihilist secularisation to be the ultimate meaning of Christianity. It
diagnoses actuality as the dissolution of transcendence that is always violent, be it
metaphysical or religious. This is an extrapolation of Girard’s desacralisation, proposing
Christianity to be the dissolution of sacred violence. To Girard, secularisation is the
modern interpretation of desacralisation. Both Vattimo and Girard agree that secularisation
is inherent to Christianity; that the ultimate meaning of Christianity is love; that
hitherto this message has not reached the ‘masses’. But they radically disagree on the
source of love and violence. To Vattimo, the divine is violent because of its transcendence
and only a nihilist world can become non-violent. To Girard, human culture is a
source of violence and love is divine. How can these two models, starting out together,
suddenly become each other’s opposite? And is there a way of ‘deciding’ between
ISSN: 2169-2327
VABB publication type: VABB-1
Publication status: published
KU Leuven publication type: IT
Appears in Collections:Centre for Metaphysics, Philosophy of Religion and Philosophy of Culture
× corresponding author
# (joint) last author

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