The key to understanding James J. O’Donnell’s biography of Augustine is the word “new” in the subtitle. He remarks that Augustine “comes weighed down with the assumptions, expectations, and conventional narratives of many generations.” Then he asks, “Can he be set free?” O’Donnell’s book is an effort to accomplish this liberation.
To some degree the effort succeeds. O’Donnell is exceedingly well-informed, not only about Augustine...
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