Stanley Hauerwas and Charles Pinches: Christians among the Virtues

This book is probably among the ones that are more often mentioned, no doubt because it is rather clearly focused on the theme of Virtues. Thus it is often cited as the book containing Hauerwas’s understanding of the virtues, which is obviously a bit problematic since this book is a collaboration between two writers, and parts of it is more Pinches than Hauerwas – though I would not want to try to formulate how they differ.

It is made up of three parts. The first part focuses on ”Aristotelian themes” mainly happiness and friendship. The second part deals with modern ”Virtue ethics” and since it probably is a question that many asks in what way Hauerwas relates to names associated with this academic trend, one should note that according to the introduction these chapters are predominately written by Pinches. The third part discusses some ”Christian virtues” and includes the essential ”Courage Exemplified” (also available in the reader), as well as discussions on Obedience, Patience and Hopefullness. It is perhaps surprising that Hauerwas has written fairly little on concrete Christian virtues, so these texts are absolutely central.

So as long as one acknowledges Pinches contribution, this book is a good place to start an investigation on Hauerwas’s ”virtue ethics”.


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