Rene Girard holds up the gospels as mirrors that reveal our broken humanity, and shows that they also reflect a new reality that can make us whole. Like Simone Weil, Girard looks at the Bible as a map of human behavior, and sees Jesus Christ as the turning point leading to new life. The title echoes Jesus' words: "I saw Satan falling like lightning from heaven". Girard persuades us that even as our world grows increasingly violent the power of the Christ-event is so great that the evils of scapegoating and sacrifice are being defeated even now. A new community, God's nonviolent kingdom, is being realized -- even now.
“Why is there so much violence in our midst?” René Girard asks. “No question is more debated today. And none produces more disappointing answers.” In Girard’s mimetic theory it is the imitation of someone else’s desire that gives rise to conflict whenever the desired object cannot be shared. This mimetic rivalry, Girard argues, is responsible for the frequency and escalating intensity of human conflict. For Girard, human conflict comes not from the loss of reciprocity between humans but from the transition, imperceptible at first but then ever more rapid, from good to bad reciprocity. In this landmark text, Girard continues his study of violence in light of geopolitical competition, focusing on the roots and outcomes of violence across societies latent in the process of globalization. The volume concludes in a wide-ranging interview with the Sicilian cultural theorist Maria Stella Barberi, where Girard’s twenty-first century emphases on the continuity of all religions, global conflict, and the necessity of apocalyptic thinking emerge.
A systematic introduction into the mimetic theory of the French-American literary theorist and philosophical anthropologist René Girard, this essential text explains its three main pillars (mimetic desire, the scapegoat mechanism, and the Biblical “difference”) with the help of examples from literature and philosophy. This book also offers an overview of René Girard’s life and work, showing how much mimetic theory results from existential and spiritual insights into one’s own mimetic entanglements. Furthermore it examines the broader implications of Girard’s theories, from the mimetic aspect of sovereignty and wars to the relationship between the scapegoat mechanism and the question of capital punishment. Mimetic theory is placed within the context of current cultural and political debates like the relationship between religion and modernity, terrorism, the death penalty, and gender issues. Drawing textual examples from European literature (Cervantes, Shakespeare, Goethe, Kleist, Stendhal, Storm, Flaubert, Dostoevsky, Proust) and philosophy (Plato, Camus, Sartre, Lévi-Strauss, Derrida, Vattimo), Palaver uses mimetic theory to explore the themes they present. A highly accessible book, this text is complemented by bibliographical references to Girard’s widespread work and secondary literature on mimetic theory and its applications, comprising a valuable bibliographical archive that provides the reader with an overview of the development and discussion of mimetic theory until the present day.
Author: René Girard
Publisher: A&C Black
Release Date: 2003
Presenting an original global theory of culture, Girard explores the social function of violence and the mechanism of the social scapegoat. His vision is a challenge to conventional views of literature, anthropology, religion and psychoanalysis. Rene Gerard is the Andrew B. Hammond Professor Emeritus of French Language, Literature and Civilization at Stanford University, USA.
In Battling to the End René Girard engages Carl von Clausewitz (1780–1831), the Prussian military theoretician who wrote On War. Clausewitz, who has been critiqued by military strategists, political scientists, and philosophers, famously postulated that "War is the continuation of politics by other means." He also seemed to believe that governments could constrain war. Clausewitz, a firsthand witness to the Napoleonic Wars, understood the nature of modern warfare. Far from controlling violence, politics follows in war's wake: the means of war have become its ends. René Girard shows us a Clausewitz who is a fascinated witness of history's acceleration. Haunted by the French-German conflict, Clausewitz clarifies more than anyone else the development that would ravage Europe. Battling to the End pushes aside the taboo that prevents us from seeing that the apocalypse has begun. Human violence is escaping our control; today it threatens the entire planet.
René Girard shows that all desires are contagious—and the desire to be thin is no exception. In this compelling new book, Girard ties the anorexia epidemic to what he calls mimetic desire: a desire imitated from a model. Girard has long argued that, far from being spontaneous, our most intimate desires are copied from what we see around us. In a culture obsessed with thinness, the rise of eating disorders should be no surprise. When everyone is trying to slim down, Girard asks, how can we convince anorexic patients to have a healthy outlook on eating? Mixing theoretical sophistication with irreverent common sense, Girard denounces a “culture of anorexia” and takes apart the competitive impulse that fuels the game of conspicuous non-consumption. He shows that showing off a slim physique is not enough—the real aim is to be skinnier than one’s rivals. In the race to lose the most weight, the winners are bound to be thinner and thinner. Taken to extremes, this tendency to escalation can only lead to tragic results. Featuring a foreword by neuropsychiatrist Jean-Michel Oughourlian and an introductory essay by anthropologist Mark R. Anspach, the volume concludes with an illuminating conversation between René Girard, Mark R. Anspach, and Laurence Tacou.
“Really wonderful; an elegantly written initiation into the mimetic theory. I am lucky to have interpreters who understand what I want to say and who can write so well.” —René Girard The work of René Girard is hugely influential in literature and cultural studies. But it is in understanding the relationship between religion and violence that his theory has created its greatest impact. Girard's understanding of mimetic rivalry and conflict and of scapegoating is seen by many to be the key to a completely new understanding of Christianity. Girard's name evokes curiosity and—often—strong feelings among devotees and skeptics. Discovering Girard is the first book to present Girard's work to a wider audience. It explains and appraises Girard's mimetic theory, shows its impact on theology and other disciplines, and manages to convey the excitement that a discovery of Girard's ideas often generates in readers.
'And He said to them, 'I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven. Behold, I give you the authority to trample on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy, and nothing shall by any means hurt you.'' Luke 10:18-19 (NKJV) John's world is filled with turmoil and doubt as the bubonic plague ravages his congregation. Can all these hideous deaths be God's will? If God is good, then why are bad things happening to good people? As John desperately searches through the sacred text, he discovers the epic battle between light and darkness. His quest uncovers secrets that could cause the defeat of the wicked spirit who fell like lightning from heaven. After Satan's fall, his goal was to conquer the earth. Thinking he has won, he brings disease, destruction, and death to God's people; but God has a plan. Margaret Mendenhall takes you behind the scenes in the classic story of the ages in an inspirational and eye-opening journey that exposes the lies and implications that endeavor to defame the character of God. Can the battle for mankind's freedom be won or is the price too high? 'Fall Like Lightning from Heaven was captivating as [we] read with fresh insight the greatest story ever told. Margaret unfolds what happened in the unseen world in an accurate yet dramatic way....In this book, you will find the answer to the question: 'If God is such a good God, why do all these bad things happen?'' Mark and Trina Hankins Mark Hankins Ministries, Alexandria, LA
Author: Stephen Kirk
Publisher: Author House
Release Date: 2011-06-09
This book presents powerfully documented vignettes to the key end times questions of “Who is the Anti-Christ?, What does the 666 mean? What about America?” No other book provides the scriptural proof texting direct from the Greek and Hebrew to confirm that Obama is the Anti-Christ, the 666 represents the mindset of Socialism, and America is doomed to a nuclear holocaust. Luke 10:18 records Jesus stating “I beheld Satan as lightning...” which translates to “Satan as Barack...” in Hebrew. Judas Iscariot, the betrayer of Christ, did so in a socialist rage against the inequalities of life and Jesus’s acceptance of poverty. Finally, Isaiah chapter 18 describes the massive destruction of a nation matching the unique characteristics of the USA on 16 different points all ending with the bringing of “THE SHE” gift, the Bride of Christ, the Church to heaven.