Symposium Introduction


Bruce Ellis Benson
Karl Hefty
Tamsin Jones
William C. Woody, S.J.



In France today, philosophy—phenomenology in particular—finds itself in a paradoxical relation to theology. Some debate a “theological turn.” Others disavow theological arguments as if such arguments would tarnish their philosophical integrity, while nevertheless carrying out theology in other venues. In Crossing the Rubicon, Emmanuel Falque seeks to end this face-off. Convinced that “the more one theologizes, the better one philosophizes,” he proposes a counterblow by theology against phenomenology. Instead of another philosophy of “the threshold” or “the leap”—and through a retrospective and forward-looking examination of his own method—he argues that an encounter between the two disciplines will reveal their mutual fruitfulness and their true distinctive borders. Falque shows that he has made the crossing between philosophy and theology and back again with audacity and perhaps a little recklessness, knowing full well that no one thinks without exposing himself to risk.

Crossing the Rubicon is Emmanuel Falque’s Discourse on Method: a pungent and polemic treatise on why we become better philosophers when we also do theology. Should we ‘cross the Rubicon’ and so trouble the distinction between philosophy and theology? Of course, Falque tells us! We have everything to gain, including something of great interest: a hermeneutic of the body and the voice. —Kevin Hart, University of Virginia

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