Vol 20 No 3 2013

Medieval Trinitarian Thought from Aquinas to Ockham

Russell L. Friedman


Russell Friedman is a professor in medieval philosophy and theology at the University of Leuven. His book goes back to a doctoral dissertation presented to the University of Iowa in 1997, as well as to four lectures he gave at the École pratique des hautes études in the Sorbonne in 2008. In each of these cases, Friedman wrestles with a set of lively Trinitarian debates between 1250 and 1350. Most of the participants were Franciscans or Dominicans. And they clashed over two major issues. Why are the Father, the Son and the Spirit both distinct and identical? And is the idea of the Son as a Word or a Concept of the Father to be taken literally or metaphorically?