George Hunsinger's runners-up

October 6, 2010

Suppose someone who hasn't been keeping up with theology for the past 25 years now wants to read the most important books written during that time. What five titles would you suggest?

We posed this question to eight theologians and published their responses in our fall books issue. Of course, it's hard to narrow a list down to just five titles—so a couple of them passed along some additional choices as well. We'll post these runners-up here on the blog.

First up is George Hunsinger, who teaches at Princeton and wrote The Eucharist and Ecumenism. Here are his top five picks:

Thomas F. Torrance, The Trinitarian Faith

Alexander Schmemann, The Eucharist

Sarah Coakley, Powers and Submissions

J. Kameron Carter, Race

Derek S. Jeffreys, Spirituality and the Ethics of Torture

For his comments, see the magazine article. And here are eight additional selections from Hunsinger, with brief comments:

Cornel West, Race Matters. Our leading black intellectual tackles some of our most intractable social problems.

Janet Martin Soskice, The Kindness of God: Metaphor, Gender, and Religious Language. Clear-sighted feminist interventions on traditional theological questions.

Brian A. Gerrish, Grace and Gratitude: The Eucharistic Theology of John Calvin. A fresh look at Calvin that destroys many stereotypes and displays the heart of his piety.

Stanley Hauerwas, After Christendom? How the Church is to Behave if Freedom, Justice, and a Christian Nation Are Bad Ideas. A deliberately provocative plea for a countercultural church fundamentally committed to peacemaking.  Don't let the subtitle put you off.

Randall C. Zachman, The Assurance Of Faith: Conscience in The Theology of Martin Luther and John Calvin. A powerful discussion of Reformation theology through one of its central themes.

Keith L. Johnson, Karl Barth and the Analogia Entis. The best book on Barth in a long time.

Christopher A. Beeley, Gregory of Nazianzus on the Trinity and the Knowledge of God: In Your Light We Shall See Light. An outstanding study of the premier Cappodocian theologian that explains his most important contributions.

Eric Gregory, Politics and the Order of Love: An Augustinian Ethic of Democratic Citizenship. A stunning account of political liberalism thoroughly informed by Augustinian wisdom.

See more theologians' top choices. What would be your picks?