Concluding Essay: New Apophatic Paths in Current Critical Thinking

  • William Franke
Part of the Palgrave Frontiers in Philosophy of Religion book series (PFPR)


This essay assesses each of the contributions in Parts 2 and 3 of the volume and draws consequences for the future of research and creative thinking on the topic of the apophatic. It brings out convergences and divergences between the various authors and uses them to illustrate in specific terms the enigmatic and inevitably contradictory nature of apophatic thinking. It draws comparisons and contrasts with the directions currently being pursued also by other researchers in this field in order to fully bring out into the open what is distinctive about the approach outlined in this book. It illuminates the reasons why apophatic thinking at its current stage is turning to the body and aesthetics and pragmatics and other concrete fields of application. It discerns the (a)logic of such thinking as it spans from the most metaphysically abstract registers to the ineffably incarnate. The place of theology in apophatic thinking for the future comes into focus as an outstanding and vigorously contested issue.

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Vanderbilt UniversityNashvilleUSA

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