This week marks the birthday of Dietrich Bonhoeffer…
Here are 10 helpful books on Bonhoeffer
that have been released in the last two years:
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Bonhoeffer’s Reception of Luther
In Dietrich Bonhoeffer’s writings, Martin Luther is ubiquitous. Too often, however, Bonhoeffer’s Lutheranism has been set aside with much less argumentative work than is appropriate in light of his sustained engagement with Luther. As a result, Luther remains a largely untouched hermeneutic key in Bonhoeffer interpretation. In Bonhoeffer’s Reception of Luther, Michael P. DeJonge presents Bonhoeffer’s Lutheran theology of justification focused on the interpersonal presence of Christ in word, sacrament, and church. The bridge between this theology and Bonhoeffer’s ethical-political reflections is his two-kingdoms thinking. Arguing that the widespread failure to connect Bonhoeffer with the Lutheran two-kingdoms tradition has presented a serious obstacle in interpretation, DeJonge shows how this tradition informs Bonhoeffer’s reflections on war and peace, as well as his understanding of resistance to political authority. In all of this, DeJonge argues that an appreciation of Luther’s ubiquity in Bonhoeffer’s corpus sheds light on his thinking, lends it coherence, and makes sense of otherwise difficult interpretive problems. What might otherwise appear as disparate, even contradictory moments or themes in Bonhoeffer’s theology can often be read in terms of a consistent commitment to a basic Lutheran theological framework deployed according to dramatically changing circumstances.
The Doubled Life of Dietrich Bonhoeffer: Women, Sexuality, and Nazi Germany
Few twentieth-century theologians have had a bigger impact on theology than Dietrich Bonhoeffer, a man who lived his faith and died at the hands of the Nazis. For Bonhoeffer, the theological was the personal, life and faith deeply intertwined–and to this day the world is inspired by that witness. Yet the true story of the women in this remarkable man’s life has until now been obscured by a conventional narrative that has distorted their role. Using primary source material by the women, and even including the first ever photo of alleged “”first fiancee”” Elisabeth Zinn, this book “”sees”” these women fully for the first time. A highly readable but scholarly work of narrative nonfiction, The Doubled Life places Bonhoeffer’s theology of love and sexuality within the context of his struggles with women, friendship, and the evils of Nazi Germany.
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