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22 - Confused Voices: Sound and Sense in the Later Augustine

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  05 October 2023

Lewis Ayres
Affiliation:
University of Durham and Australian Catholic University, Melbourne
Michael W. Champion
Affiliation:
Australian Catholic University, Melbourne
Matthew R. Crawford
Affiliation:
Australian Catholic University, Melbourne
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Summary

The wordless, often unwritable sound of the vox confusa is usually contrasted with the verbal, writeable sound of the vox articulata. The former was held to be irrational and meaningless; the latter, rational and significant. This chapter will examine the role which the vox confusa played in Augustine’s thought. It will argue that, in his later works, we encounter a wild(er) Augustine who appears to be more willing than his earlier self to recognise and exploit the vox confusa in a theological context.

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The Intellectual World of Late Antique Christianity
Reshaping Classical Traditions
, pp. 404 - 425
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 2023

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