Depicting Deity: A Metatheological Approach




2022.07.01 : View this Review Online | View Recent NDPR Reviews

Jonathan L. Kvanvig, Depicting Deity: A Metatheological Approach, Oxford University Press, 2021, 224pp., $70.00 (hbk), ISBN 9780192896452.

Reviewed by Georg Gasser, Universität Augsburg

In the philosophical guild, we are familiar with metametaphysical and metaethical questions. Metametaphysics concerns the nature, methodology and presuppositions of metaphysical inquiry. Metaethics deals with the nature, methodology and presuppositions of ethical inquiry. What about metatheology? Apparently, there is no vibrant field of inquiry yet comparable to the two other disciplines mentioned above. This might change, however, as John Kvanvig’s book understands itself explicitly as a metatheological study aiming at exploring largely unchartered territory.

Assume God exists. Then a question that immediately follows is: What is God like? Kvanvig addresses this question by exploring the possibilities regarding the nature of God and what criteria are at hand to examine and compare them in terms of their explanatory strengths and limitations. He identifies…

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