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Between Catastrophes: God, Nature and Humanity

Between Catastrophes: God, Nature and Humanity

John Milbank, “Between Catastrophes: God, Nature and Humanity,” Revista Portuguesa de Filosofia 77, no. 2–3 (2021): 489–500,

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  • Between Catastrophes: God, Nature and Humanity

    Type Journal Article
    Author John Milbank
    Rights © 2021 by Revista Portuguesa de Filosofia
    Volume 77
    Issue 2-3
    Pages 489-500
    Publication Revista Portuguesa de Filosofia
    ISSN 0870-5283
    Date 2021
    DOI 10.17990/RPF/2021_77_2_0489
    Language English
    Abstract Critical responses to the pandemic have divided between the need to control and defeat it and fears of a new medicalisation of human existence. In the short-term the first response is right, but in the long-term the second. The ideological division on this issue on the left roughly correlates with a relative stress on the power of the market on the one hand or the power of the state on the other. But these are two halves of the same picture: the mechanisation of human life and the artificial rendering of the natural scarce and threatening. The tendencies that give rise to pandemics and those which exult in increasing total control are the same. Resistance can only come from a resistance to liberal mechanising as such. This requires the double sense that we are as spirits located within nature and yet as spirits transcend nature, which the theological doctrine of creation upholds. The challenge is to create a new global consensus and shared metaphysical politics around this legacy.
    Date Added 9/10/2021, 5:12:00 PM
    Modified 9/10/2021, 5:51:57 PM


    • Covid-19, creation, ecology, exception, ideology, medicalisation, nature, pandemic, SARS-CoV-2, spirit.


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