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John Henry Newman (1801– 1890) was very much a man of his time— an eminent Victorian philosopher and theologian who formed part of an influential Romantic movement in literature, art, and architecture. A central figure in the Tractarian movement of the 1830s and 1840s, he reasserted the Catholic doctrines and practices of the Church of England against the strongly Erastian tendencies of the time, and the culmination of these ideas led to what was perhaps his most notorious work, "Tract 90," in which he claimed that the Thirty-nine Articles of the Church of England could be interpreted from a Catholic viewpoint. In 1845 he was received into the Roman Catholic church, and since his "rediscovery" by fellow Catholics after the First World War there has been a well-organized campaign for his canonization as a saint.
Newman’ s writings have commanded interest from across the disciplines of literature, philosophy, and theology, but many critical assessments of his life and works have been accused of bowing to the mythology that has built up around Newman and his fellow Tractarians. This book offers a more challenging appraisal of Newman’ s life and thought.
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David Nicholls is Vicar of Littlemore. After teaching in the West Indies for some years, he returned to England as chaplain and fellow of Exeter College, Oxford.
Fergus Kerr, OP, is honorary fellow of New College, Edinburgh, and novice master of the Dominicans in Great Britain.
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